Sunday, 3 August 2008

Lake Connewarre

This morning I did a Land for Wildlife assessment, on a property on the Bellarine Peninsula overlooking Lake Connewarre. The Lake is another hidden treasure on Geelong's outskirts, a large lake almost invisible because there are no major roads nearby. It's a tidal lake, with the Barwon River running in one end and out the other before it gets to the estuary at Ocean Grove. Swans, pelicans, spoonbills, ducks and small waders are prolific.

The landowners on the property we assessed have fenced off the saltmarsh on the edge of the lake, beautiful low-growing saltmash that only shows its beauty when you get down close to have a good look. This area gets covered when the Barwon is in flood, or at a very high tide when the lake is full. We saw several types of glasswort plants, but I wouldn't be confidant about identifying to species level. The red colouring of the beads is spectacular. A hand-lens reveals even more beauty. This area has been a favourite with the endangered Orange-bellied Parrot - they love glasswort seeds - but they haven't been seen this winter unfortunately.


mick said...

I don't find any of the saltmarsh plants easy to ID but they are beautiful! I don't know if the ones down your way are similar to ours.

Denis Wilson said...

Hi Boobook.
Your mention of the Glassworts immediately reminded me of Gouldiae and Duncan's reports of Blue-winged Parrots over in Gippsland.
I hope some do turn up where you were doing the assessment.
Those birds need all the help they can get.
Keep up the good work.

Snail said...

I keep meaning to go to Lake Connewarre but have yet to get around to it. You've inspired me. I will definitely take a peek next week.

Mosura said...

Excellent! How long has the area been fenced off? I ask because I'm curious as to what vegetation changes may have occurred.

Gaye from the Hunter said...

Yes, these are beautiful plants up close, and a very interesting environment.

We camped out in NW Victoria a few years back by a salt lake and it was the first time I had got amongst these plants. I didn't learn much about them, but I most certainly enjoyed the experience.

Beaut photos !


Boobook said...

Hello all,
The owner fenced the area several years ago on a 50-50 arrangement with the Catchment Management Authority. Access for the public along the shoreline is best accessed from Brinsmead Rd, Leopold (there is a picnic spot there). Also Tait Point on the south side of the lake, at the end of Staceys Rd, Connewarre. The spoonbills and swans yesterday were magnificant, and some overwintering red-caps and sharpies as well.