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Saturday, 14 January 2017

ANIMALS IN THE WONDERFUL WORLD OF OZ

 

"ARE THOSE MONKEYS IN THE TREES?"
Nope, just Australia's alarm clock.

Good morning 4am!!!!!

We love our great outdoors in Australia, especially up here in the tropics. Whenever there is a chance we pack the trailer with camping and fishing gear and head bush. Heading Outback or to our fave watering hole is not without peril however. There is danger in them hills, under rocks, in trees and under water. You need to have your wits about you... you need to be prepared, armed with weapons and a first aid kit. Everything in Australia wants to kill you but us Aussies grew up with this and can bat off the terrors with one hand, one eye closed and a VB in the other hand.
 
1) HOOP SNAKES.

So you have set up camp, cup of billy tea in hand by a small fire when you hear a strange crunching sound emanating from the surrounding bush. The sound continues to grow louder, coming towards you. You stand and survey the scene. The scrub shakes, the sound comes closer still... suddenly.... the scrub parts and out rolls... a HOOP SNAKE! You drop your tea and leg it down the hill away from camp, the snake rolling towards you hot on your heels. There is nothing worse than an attack from a deadly hoop snake. Thankfully you reach the gully and climb the other side... a place where hoop snakes dare not go (as they can't roll upwards). You lived to tell another tale.


2) THORNY DEVILS.
 "I am here to destroy you and take over your world"...

Just give him a moment and he will use his laser beam eyes to take out his prey. Thorny devils have super powers, they do! When thirsty they can put a foot into a pool of water and absorb it through their skin with no need to drink from their mouth. This makes re-fueling quick and efficient so they are right and ready for battle. Boo-wha ha ha ha... just kidding! Thorny Devils are cool placid little critters from our Red Centre. They are very harmless... and look uber alien robotic cool!   


3) DROP BEARS.
Every Australian since birth knows about drop bears (scientific name: Phascolarctos Cinereus) a carnivorous cousin of the Koala. You NEVER go walking in the bush alone... always in groups. A solitary walker is who the infamous Drop Bear chooses to prey on. You do not want to be on the receiving end of those gnashes! Nom, nom, nom.

Check out more on the Drop Bear from the Australian Museum's website link below.


4) JUMPING CROCS.
I can get to you where ever you may be!

The Estuarine Crocodile lives in and around Cairns, north in the Daintree National Park up to Cape York Peninsula across the top of the country into the Northern Territory and across to Western Australia. "Salties" were brought to the world stage by Paul Hogan in Crocodile Dundee in the 80's followed by Steve Irwin of Crocodile Hunter fame. These fascinating historic beasts are loved by many, however loathed and feared by most. There is no taking a quick dip to cool off in our northern sea waters. Stick to the fresh water swimming holes peoples!!!

via GIPHY
No! no! no! no! NO!!!! GET OUT NOW!!!!!

*Grits teeth* Hurry up and take the darn photo!

5) GIANT PYTHONS.

Doesn't matter if you want to get in a round of golf before lunch, you may "be" lunch if you were like this wallaby. This 30 minute feeding display happened during a usual golfing day on a Cairns golf course. You may think the photographers are a little close to the action here... but they are safe. This python won't need another meal for quiet some time. So.... back on with that game then.
Eeeek! I hope I am not lunch next!

6) GIANT BIRD KILLERS.
I'm gonna mess you up man!

Cassowary's Can kill, Oh yes.... they can. The parents will do anything to protect their young if you threaten them in any way. They are prehistoric giant flightless birds with giant sharp prehistoric talons that will rip your insides out. Cassowary's are endemic to the Tropical North Australian rainforest and you are kind of lucky if you see them crossing the road in front of your car. Just wind that window up and lock all the doors until the threat has passed ;)
Oh, and the males are the ones who brings up the babies.


7) BLUE RING OCTOPUS.
Oooooooo! How purteee are you!

"Mum, look what I found!" PUT IT DOWN... PUT IT DOWN NOW!

Do NOT under any circumstances pick up or handle this pretty looking small octopus in and around the waters of Australia. I don't even know if the person in the above picture survived... this is the most deadly of all our marine animals. The neuotoxin produced from this little guy can kill 26 human adults within minutes (and there is no known anti-venom yet)!

Maybe just enjoy viewing the little Nemo's instead.

8) MEGA BATS.
I am coming to suck your blood...

Yup... they are actually called MEGA bats (commonly known by Aussies as Fruit Bats). These fellas carry viruses so it's a good idea to not handle them or be tempted to give them a tummy rub, you may get bitten leading to all sorts of sickness. Fruit Bats eat (your blood... he he he.. just jokes) fruit like mangoes. In the early evening thousands of bats fly from their camp in the trees in search of fruit. You may feel they are all launching an offensive and ready to attack when the sky fills with these large mammals... on a full moon the scene is just chilling! Never fear... the only damage being done will be yellow mango bat shit all over your parked car (and perhaps some lost sleep while they have their bat parties at night).
Beware the falling Poo!

9) BOX JELLYISH.

Now this fella does kill and also it's tentacles killa hurt like hell!!! You don't want to have to go through the pain and torture a sting from these jellyfish can cause. In the summer months, when our tropical waters are like soup and the rains have arrived is when these killers are in our waters, mainly close to shore  and tropical beaches. Stinger nets are out at every beach (that protect you to some extent) and if you are out snorkeling on the Great Barrier Reef you get to look real sexy in a full body suit for protection. So how does one remain cool in those hot stinky summer months? Do as the locals do and take a cool dip in a nice freshwater rainforest swimming hole... no killer jellys there!
The stinger suits make for a good profile pic if anything!

10) DRAGONS.

Yes, we lucky Australian's have Dragons! I swear this to be true... for realz! Some people even keep them as a pet... but they should be left alone in the wild where they belong.

Ha ha ha... did I fool you??? I didn't lie however, we DO have real dragons in Australia!

Frilled Neck Lizards are just one of the Dragon family. The Frilly is rather elusive so you are lucky to spot one before they bolt for the nearest tree. Their frill is raised only when they feel threatened to make them seem bigger and scarier than they actually are. You could try and get close but I bet you you can't. They are relatively harmless. We also have Water Dragons who like to take a swim!

Well hello there Mr Dragon. Can I take you home?

Well... that's my guide to some of the weird wonderful wildlife we have here in Australia. Some of them you fear, some you will laugh at and some will just make you cringe. It's all part of living in the wonderful world of Aus.

I think that's enough wackiness for now, I'll just leave this here...
Aaaaand breath... pretty (and safe) Sunbird. You are a joy to watch.


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