Another stroll on Tasmanian beaches

The word ‘beach’ is mentioned in the title but this story is really about an extended family of bandicoots – of which I didn’t have the time to take a photo.

The temperature was mild, the sky blue, and almost no wind. It is autumn and I was comfortable wearing a short sleeved tee-shirt. My walk started from one end of Howrah Beach, and then onwards through silky soft white sand.

I plodded along the water’s edge then continued up around the headland that separates Howrah from Bellerive Beach.

Sporadically people would appear in front of me walking from Bellerive to Howrah Beach but for most of the time I was alone on the curvy path where others remained out of sight. The path edges a bushy patch before a cliff on the sea side and it passes near to household fences on the inland side. My brain registered movement along the shaded ground beneath the fence. To my delight I watched a native Tasmanian Brown bandicoot scurrying, presumably hoping for a hole beneath the fence to escape from my view.  There wasn’t one and s/he ran back across the path into the bush. I must have been talking to it because when a woman and dog on a lead rounded the corner she was telling me – “there are many here”.  We stopped to talk – in wonder and joy – these balls of shiny healthy browns with their long digging snouts  felt safe in that neighbourhood.  It seems that feral or wandering cats are not causing them any bother.  As the woman and I walked off in different directions, almost immediately I saw another glossy bandicoot fossicking away to be my left; s/he was not disturbed by my footfall. I turned and called to the woman – “there’s another one here”.  She had stopped to watch another.

Despite walking this headland many times, I never seen one bandicoot so it was a treat to see an extended family of bandicoots.  Terrifically encouraging in this day and age where native animals are under great threat from humans and environmental changes.  All the better because those not in the know assume these wonderful animals are rats.

By the time I reached the Bellerive Beach, the tide was very low and fully exposing a shelf of mussels, and I watched wind pushing the water onshore. The sky was dramatic.

At the end of Bellerive Beach I followed a line of seagull footsteps off the beach.

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2 Responses to Another stroll on Tasmanian beaches

  1. wilfredbooks says:

    Looks wonderful. Here in the northern hemisphere, we’re desperately awaiting the arrival of warmer weather: it’s always very volatile this time of year. I’m lucky enough to have lovely beaches only 20mins walk away. Cheers, Jon.


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