We had expected to see lots of fungi after the warmish wet weather, but it proved to be too early for most species.

 

However birds and plants were in abundance. As most plants were not flowering we were challenged to identify them by their foliage, with some, such as Large-leaf Bush-pea Pultenaea daphnoides and Rough Bush-pea P.scabra, making it easy due to their distinctive leaves.

Rich green foliage everywhere after the rain

On the first part of the walk up from Distillery Creek we were pleased to see large areas of Hop Goodenia G.ovata with fresh bright-green foliage. Later on some colourful Common Heath Epacris impressa brightened up some areas, plus a few examples of the rich red Cranberry Heath Astroloma humifusum in flower.

Common Heath

Cranberry Heath

We were very surprised to see one, very late flowering, Rosy Hyacinth Orchid Dipodium roseum.

Rosy Hyacinth Orchid

Many Ironbarks Eucalyptus tricarpa were attracting the birds and littering the track with their pink or yellow flowers.

Ironbark flower

Let's look at the Ironbark flowers up close

Two species of really dramatic fungi were finally seen. Midway through the walk, on a dead log, we saw the brilliantly-coloured Scarlet Bracket Fungus Pycnoporus coccineus.

Scarlet Bracket Fungus

Then at Moggs Creek Nature circuit we saw several eye-catching large Ghost Fungus Omphalotus nidifolrmis… oh to come back at night and see them glowing in the dark!

Ghost Fungus

The walk turned out to be a delightful and relaxed ramble. We had morning tea  beside the Painkalac Reservoir where we looked in vain for platypus, and lunch was very civilised sitting at tables in the Moggs Creek picnic ground before doing the nature walk.

Morning tea

Finish of lunch and getting ready for the nature walk

At the final bridge several of us spent some time trying to identify numerous small birds bathing in a small pool, then we reluctantly returned to the car.

Ellinor Campbell

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