Welcome to Life Images by Jill

Welcome to Life Images by Jill.........Seeking to preserve images and memories of the beautiful world in which we live and the people in it.
I am a Freelance Journalist and Photographer based in Bunbury, Western Australia. My published work specialises in Western Australian travel articles and stories about inspiring everyday people. My passion is photography, writing, travel, wildflower and food photography.
I hope you enjoy scrolling through my blog. To visit other pages, please click on the tabs above, or go to my Blog Archive on the side bar. Please feel free to leave a comment at the bottom of any of my posts. I value your messages and look forward to hearing from you.If you like my work, and would like to buy a print, or commission me for some work, please go to my "contact me" tab.
Thank you for visiting my blog and helping me "step into the light".



Monday, 17 October 2016

Meeting a Bilby in the Dryandra Woodland in Western Australia's wheatbelt

Stop press! It has just been announced that Dryandra is to become Western Australia's next National Park. You can read more and see a short video here - National Park for wheatbelt

We first camped in the Dryandra Woodland in the heart of the Western Australian wheatbelt in 2005.  We’ve enjoyed revisiting a few times since then - tented, camper trailer - I've blogged about Drayandra before - Camping in the Dryandra Woodland  (2015)

Most recently in September 2016 with our caravan - but is that really camping? I haven't decided yet. Only two hours from our home in the south-west or from Perth, Dryandra is a perfect weekend getaway. You can be there by lunch time, and be walking along one of Dryandra’s walk trails by early afternoon. 

There are three camping or accommodation options. Our preference is the original Congelin campground located near the old Congelin Dam and railway walktrail. The sites are partly shaded and are suitable for tents, camper trailers, caravans and group camping. The basic facilities include fire-rings, picnic tables, gas BBqs under a shelter and long-drop toilets. I like the free-flow of the Congelin camp sites which are not so well defined and the views over the grass through the trees to the old railway walktrail which takes you to the old railway dam. This is an easy walktrail which is lovely in the early morning or late afternoon.

The new Gnaala Mia campground  located on Godfrey Road, one kilometre west of the York-Williams Road, has twenty-seven gravel formed caravan bays and eight tent sites arranged around two separate loops, though please note that the "tent" sites are also gravel. You can see a map and images below. Facilities include eco toilets, gas BBqs under shelters with picnic tables and sink. Each campsite has a picnic table, log benches and an open fire pit. 

Alternatively visitors can stay in former forestry huts at the Lions Dryandra Woodland Village. 

Below, top left you can see the new Gnaala Mia campground, and top right and bottom the Congelin campground.  

Gnaala Mia campground
Dryandra’s 28,000 hectare reserve is managed by the Western Australian Department of Parks and Wildlife (DEPAW).  With less than 10% of the wheatbelt’s native vegetation remaining, Dryandra is a valuable conservation area for wildlife and flora as it is one of the largest remnants of original bushland in the wheatbelt.  For people Dryandra is a wonderful places to camp, picnic and bushwalk, especially during spring when the wildflowers are at their most brilliant. 

Extensive clearing for farming and introduction of exotic plants, diseases and predators such as the fox have severely affected native plants and animals. DEPAW’s Western Shield project, “Return to Dryandra” is re-introducing endangered species through breeding programs and fox-baiting. Dryandra’s woodlands protect 24 mammal, 98 bird and 41 reptile species, including mammals such as the woylie, western grey kangaroo, tammar wallaby, echidna and numbat. 
Clockwise from top left - Western Australia's animal emblem, the numbat (you have to be very lucky to see one!), a western grey kangaroo with joey in her pouch, an echidna, a bobtail goanna.

 I think the echidna below is saying "you can't see me!". We saw several echidnas on our last visit. They tend to curl up into a ball and hunker themselves down into the top layer of soil when you approach them. Those long spines are a protective mechanism. Their body length is 35-40cm, and they weigh about 2-7kgEchidnas are insectivores and eats ants and termites. Echidnas are one of only two Australian mammals that lay eggs. The baby hatches after 10 days and is carried around by the mother for two months in a pouch-like skin fold. This baby is called a ‘puggle’. Don't you just love that name "puggle". 

You can read more about the echidna, plus see a short video about a puggle here - Perth Zoo - Short Beaked Echidna

You can't see me!
Echidna at Dryandra
On our last visit we joined the nocturnal night tour at the Barna Mia Sanctuary. This tour is a unique opportunity to observe threatened marsupial species such as the Bilby, Boodie, Woylie, and Mala at close range. The tour leader lead us by torch light around the sanctuary's paths. At designated spots we stopped and sat on logs and food was put down for the animals which are all nocturnal. They are obviously well used to this as they were quite happy to come out and feed. The red light protects their eyes against "night blindness" from an ordinary torch light, but is not so good for photography, so I converted some of my photos to black and white.  In the picture below you can see a Bilby - with the long ears. I'm not sure now whether the other animal on the right is a Boodie or a Woylie. The tour doesn’t run every evening and bookings are essential, so please refer to the information boards to book a tour. 

This was the first time I had seen a Bibly close up - so exciting. They are about the size of a large hare - about 29-55 cm with a 20-29cm tail. They are omnivores and eat insects, seeds, bulbs, fruit and fungi.
You can read more about the Bilby and view some short videos here - Perth Zoo - The Bilby

Bilby and friends at Barna Mia, Dryandra
There are eight walk trails in Dryandra suitable for all levels of fitness, ranging from one to thirteen kilometres and a 25-kilometre audio drive. The trails feature diverse vegetation including white-barked wandoo, powderbark, brown mallet and rock sheoak woodlands. During spring, when we were visited the woodlands are ablaze with colour. Information panels along the way tell you about the environment, plants, animals and history. The Ochre Trail describes Noongar culture and features an ochre pit used by Aboriginal people for decoration. 
There is a picnic area located at the Old Mill Dam which is also the start of the 2.7km Wandoo walk and the 5.5km Woylie walk. 
Below you can see views along the Ochre Trail, including views over wheatbelt farmland, and a teepee! 

In the early 1900s bark from the naturally growing brown mallet trees was extensively harvested. The bark contains high quality tannins used for tanning leather. Between 1925 and 1962 the mallet plantations supplied bark for this industry. During the Depression 19,000 acres of mallet were planted. The industry ceased in the 1960s due to the development of synthetic tannins.  In 1970 Rupert Murdoch bought land, including Dryandra, planning to mine for bauxite. Naturalist and conservationist Vincent Serventy was able to dissuade Murdoch from mining and the reserve was given over to conservation.  Thanks to Vincent's passion and Murdoch's generosity, Dryandra is now a place where animals and plants are protected and people can enjoy the natural environment.

I must say I love bark.....

During spring the woodlands erupt in a profusion of wildflowers including the prolific yellow Poison Bush (Gastrolobium) and many varieties of Dryandra. The Poison Bush is a member of the pea family and contains a toxic substance that when synthesised is called ‘1080’. The poison bush has no effect on native animals, but 1080 is used in baits to control feral animals such as foxes. On the Barna Mia tour we were told that they are currently developing a bait for wild cats which are very destructive to our small native animal and bird populations

Below are just some of the wonderful array of wildflowers you will find at Dryandra in spring.
Poison bush - Gastrolobium
some of the many varieties of Dryandra
 Curiously I have just read that Dryandras have now been renamed Banksias as new studies have revealed that Dryandras are actually a type of Banksia. You can read more about it here - Florabase - Dryandras and Banksias

Coneflower - Isopogon
Red Leschenaultia - Lechenaultia formosa
 And below an exciting new find for me - Grey-leaved Bottlebrush - Beaufortia incana - listed in my wildflower book as uncommon.

Grey-leaved Bottlebrush - Beaufortia incana

An easy 1.6 kilometre walk trail starts at the Congelin campground and follows the old Pinjarra to Narrogin railway line constructed in 1925. Interpretive signage describes sites along the way including the old water tank stand and other interesting historical relics. In spring look out for Cowslip, Spider, Dragon and Blue China orchids along this trail. 

A good tip here would be: bring along some insect repellent and wear long sleeves as the mosquitoes are a little too friendly beneath the sheoaks where the orchids are. 

Below clockwise from top left - Sugar orchid (Caladenia saccharata), Vanilla / Lemon-scented sun orchid (Thelymitra antennifera), one of the spider orchids,  Dragon Orchid(Caladenia barbarossa), I "think" the blue one is a Blue China orchid (Cyanicula gemmata), and another of the spider orchid family - of which there are many so very hard for me to identify these. 

Dryandra orchids
During the evening you may see possums in the campground, but please do not encourage them by feeding them, or leaving food outside, and zip up your tents. 

Dryandra is only a few hours from major centres, making it an easy to get to destination for a restful weekend getaway.

Where is it?: On the Williams to York Road.  Approx 164 kms south-east of Perth (2 hours) and 22 kms north-west of the town of Narrogin. Turnoff to the Congelin campsite is on the eastern side of the road. Roads are Dryandra are gravel, but were in very good condition when we visited. Gnaala Mia campground is located on Godfrey Road, one kilometre west of the York-Williams Road.
Best time to visit: Late winter and spring. Summer not recommended.
Facilities:  Long-drop toilet, gas BBqs, picnic tables and fire rings. No power. Please bring all your own supplies, water and firewood, be aware of fire restrictions and take away your rubbish.  
Walk trails: Check Information boards for walk trail distances, estimated walk times and degree of difficulty. 
Campground rates at the time of writing:
Poison bush - Gastrolobium
$10 adult per night, $6.60 concession card holder per night, $2.20 child per night (over 5 and under 16 years)
Pets: Not permitted due to wildlife conservation and  possible poison baiting
Wheelchair access: Nothing specific
Lions Dryandra Woodland Village offers a range of accommodation; 6 large huts, 2 small huts and the Currawong Complex for groups of 25 or more. Please refer to their website for bookings.

Useful Websites: 
WA Dept of Parks and Wildlife – www.parks.dpaw.wa.gov.au/park/dryandra-woodland
Dryandra Tourism: www.dryandratourism.org.au
Lions Dryandra Village: www.dryandravillage.org.au

Barna Mia: Telephone for bookings: 08 98819200 (Bookings are essential but you will have to drive up to the top of the hill east of the Dryandra Village to get mobile phone coverage. 

Thank you so much for stopping by. I hope you have enjoyed this little visit to Dryandra. Do you have a favourite camping spot where you like to revisit? Perhaps you'd like to tell us about it in the comments. 

These spider orchids are so tiny!
 I value your comments and look forward to hearing from you. I will try to visit your blogs in return. Have a wonderful week.

I am linking up to the link-ups below. Please click on the links to see fabulous contributions from around the world - virtual touring at its best!

Mosaic Monday 
Life Thru the Lens 
Lifestyle Fifty Monday Linkup 
Our World Tuesday
Through My Lens 
Wednesday Around the World at Communal Global
Worth Casing Wednesday

Travel Photo Thursday
The Weekly Postcard

Sunday, 9 October 2016

Go away winter!

It's been a long cold winter and everyone is wishing that spring would push winter out of the picture. Even the flowers are snubbing their noses at winter and saying go away it's our turn. Can you see the grey clouds in the background of my yellow daisies? Yes, it rained today. We still have our fire on every night to warm our home. Last weekend we even had hail. It's October for goodness sake! Over a month into spring!

This was not the post I was planning to write today. But this afternoon, despite the cold wind, I actually ventured out into the garden to do some weeding and what do you think I saw? Can you see it?

 A tiny bird nesting in my Port Wine Magnolia. She has picked a rather breezie walkway to build her nest, but she has laid two eggs.  She must have liked the pretty flowers. She even has flowers surrounding her nest.  My husband says she is a Brown Honey-Eater. It was lovely to see her sitting on her nest this afternoon. A few years ago we had some tiny birds nesting in one of my hanging baskets on our patio. They returned a few years running. I hope the Brown Honey-Eater does the same. 

Thank you to my husband for the close up photos of this tiny bird.

 Update 14 October - we now have two chicks! Don't worry, I won't disturb them too much. Just a quick pic. They're asleep at the moment.


My Port Wine Magnolia - Michelia Figo

 What else is happening in my garden? Surely spring is just around the corner. The weather report tonight was predicting slightly warmer temperatures this week.

In my back garden the apricot tree has a few remaining flowers and the apricots are forming. Nearly time to net against the birds. The grape vines are shooting and we planted tomatoes yesterday - a little later this year due to the cold weather. The leaves on the lemon tree are looking a bit sad but there are loads of lemons (I must make marmalade) and the orange tree is a mass a sweet smelling flowers. We only finished picking the last crop in mid August. The little brown honey-eater has been dashing from her nest into our orange tree - so she is enjoying the nectar.

 My blackberry bush is fruiting, the sage looks better than it has for years and the gooseberry is flowering - I don't like them but my son and grandsons do.

There are flowers too in my back yard - clockwise from top left -  A little white daisy creeping border, a cacti flourishing in a hanging moss ball, my white Gardenia, the white native Chamelaucium species Walpole Wax, lavender, and a geranium - such a hardy garden plant.

 Out in my front garden my roses are starting to bloom. This yellow variety is a mass of buds. I brought a big bunch inside. The pink top right was there when we bought the house, and the orange was a plant my mother-in-law gave me.

Below clockwise from top left - pink and yellow daisies, native Hibiscus, native Hibertia, a tumble of border plants, and nasturtium. Do you ever put nasturtiums in salads? I know you can, but I have never tried it. My mother said in the Depression years they used to make nasturtium sandwiches. 

Meanwhile I hear that the farmers in our wheatbelt are suffering from the long cold, frosty winter. Frosts have all but ruined three-quarters of Western Australia's wheat crops that looked like was going to be a bumper season. Many growers will only break even or will make a loss from this year's harvest. Devastating for them financially, socially and emotionally. 

Last week I blogged about the wildflowers coming back after our devastating January 2016 bushfires. (If you missed it you can click here - Beauty from the ashes) Today I heard on the radio that because of the long wet winter the fire authorities haven't been able to do the spring burns that they usually do, and they are predicting many bushfires again this summer. I hope not. 

I think our community's collective wish "go away winter" must be working. Today it has been a beautiful spring day and I have been out in the garden weeding off and on between other things that I had to do today. It has been lovely being out in the sun. 
What is the season looking like in your corner of the world? Have you planted a summer vegetable garden? As we in the southern hemisphere are welcoming spring and looking forward to summer, the northern hemisphere are enjoying the fall colours and preparing for winter.

Thank you so much for stopping by. I value your comments and look forward to hearing from you. I will try to visit your blogs in return. Have a wonderful week.One of my roses for you.

You might also like - 
Harmony through flowers 
Allowing time to sit in my winter garden 
Spring is the time for tulips 

I am linking up to the link-ups below. Please click on the links to see fabulous contributions from around the world - virtual touring at its best!


Mosaic Monday 
Life Thru the Lens 

Lifestyle Fifty Monday Linkup 
Our World Tuesday

Through My Lens 
Wednesday Around the World at Communal Global
Worth Casing Wednesday
Travel Photo Thursday

The Weekly Postcard 

Sunday, 2 October 2016

Beauty from the ashes

In January 2016 summer bushfires devastated the tiny township of Yarloop, as well as farmland and bushland in the Waroona-Harvey area south of Perth and also near Esperance on our south coast. I blogged about it here - Western Australia is burning. 

Nine months later they are still cleaning up in Yarloop but residents are starting to return to the town. You can read more here -  Yarloop to reopen 

I haven't visited Yarloop since the fire. The town was closed for many months, and people were not admitted. And I didn't think we, outsiders, had any right to be there "sight-seeing" the devastation of people's lives. It was not a "tourist attraction".

Last weekend we past through a stretch of bushland east of Harvey that was totally destroyed by the January bushfire. It was eerie walking amongst the blackened trees and across the bare black earth.  

 Many of the trees may never recover, and we could see where very big trees had fallen and been burnt to ash and charcoal. However there was hope too as some blackened trees were starting to sprout new leaves. 

Amongst this devastation there were little patches of beauty. Tiny orchids were pushing up through the blackened earth. It was amazing to see them. I "think" this is a Silky Blue Orchid. The black background in this image is a burnt log.

And below you can see a Jug Orchid, Pink Fairies, Cowslips and two more Silky Blue Orchids. 

Below are Snail Orchids. You sometimes see them growing like this in "colonies" like here in the leaf litter on this burnt log.  

Bushfires are very much a part of the Australian landscape. It is a natural part of regeneration. In Australia's past, the indigenous Aboriginal people practised mosaic burning - a system of lighting patches of small, low-intensity fires to sweep through the understorey of the bush. As a result, large intense bushfires were uncommon. You can read more about mosaic burning here - DePAW - Traditional Aboriginal burning.  

Burning the bush is needed to reduce fuel loads. Local authorities have a program for doing this but in the last couple of years we have seen massive bushfires that have raged uncontrolled for days. Bushfires are sometimes caused by summer lightening strikes, however bushfires are sometimes also deliberately lit. I don't know how anyone can do this. 

We saw a lot of evidence of out-of-control bushfires in the Kimberley in July-August this year. This one, you see below, on the way to the Mornington Wilderness Camp had been burning for two months.

We saw some of the 2015 summer bush-fire devastation east of Harvey along the Harvey-Quindanning Road which I blogged about here - Bushwalking at Hoffman's Mill
 and on the Bibbulmun Track near Grimwade here - A walk with Bibbulmun Track Volunteers  

The plants green tops you see in the top left-hand-corner image are Balga Grass Trees. They like fire. Bushfires burn the foliage and blacken the stump, but then it regrows

 This afternoon we went out to a patch of bushland on the Preston to Yarloop road that had been completely burnt during the January 2016 bushfires. Our photography group had alerted us that there was a profusion of spring wildflowers, including orchids growing amongst the burnt bushland. 

 It was amazing to see how thickly the undergrowth (along with a lot of weeds) was regenerating after our good winter rains.  I found these orchids you see in the mosaic below, clockwise from top left, - 

Blue China, Pink Fairy, Spider orchid, Donkey Orchid (I think a Pansy Donkey orchid), Cowslip, Red Beaks, Leak Orchid, another of the Spider orchid family, and in the center a new find for me - the Rabbit Orchid. I'm always excited to add a new wildflower to my collection. 

 I love searching for wild orchids. They can be difficult to find because they are often very small and hiding in the undergrowth. My husband has become very good at spotting them. 

Here are a couple of my blog posts about orchids which you might enjoy - 
Where wild orchids grow 
IN search of wild orchids 
A walk through Ambergate Reserve 
Harmony through flowers 

 I've been asked how I get the orchid photos to "pop". First you need to use Aperture Priority on your camera. Use a small number like F4.6 to blur the background and make your subject, the orchid, stand out from the background. Use a macro lens on a DSLR for best results, or try a close up filter on your lens. Use a tripod to avoid camera shake. Although I rarely do in the field. If you are using manual settings you can up the ISO enabling you to hand-hold in low light. After that I have just used a little post-processing to sharpen the whole thing up some more and add extra pop. 

I hope you have enjoyed my post today. Last week we camped in the Dryandra Woodland, a remnant area of natural bushland in our wheatbelt. The wildflowers were stunning, but they will have to wait for another post. 

Thank you so much for stopping by. I value your comments and look forward to hearing from you. I will try to visit your blogs in return. Have a wonderful week.

I am linking up to the link-ups below. Please click on the links to see fabulous contributions from around the world - virtual touring at its best!


Mosaic Monday 
Life Thru the Lens 

Lifestyle Fifty Monday Linkup 
Our World Tuesday

Through My Lens 
Wednesday Around the World at Communal Global
Worth Casing Wednesday
Travel Photo Thursday

The Weekly Postcard

Monday, 26 September 2016

Once in 40 years wildflower extravaganza - visiting Lesueur National Park

They say that this year's Western Australian wildflower bloom is the best seen in 40 years. Favourable weather conditions - rain and sun - have brought on a brilliant wildflower extravaganza spreading across our state.  

Western Australia boasts up to 12,000 known species and the Western Australian wildflower season spreads over several months starting from July in the north’s Kimberley region till November in the south. Walking through the bush during spring you will see the browns and greens of the bush erupt in a dazzling display of vibrant colour. Everlasting magic

One of the Australian wattles - genus Acacia
Over the last ten or so years I've been blessed with the opportunity to travel across much of our state and touring, whether it be only a few days or a couple of weeks, during our wildflower season has a big attraction for me, especially since I discovered digital photography and my love for wildflower photography.

You don't need to go far, even a small bush block in suburbia can reveal hidden treasures in spring. Photographing wildflowers    

 In July we discovered the magic of the Kimberley wildflowers - oh the brilliance of those reds, yellows and oranges against those vast Kimberley blue skys and red earth. I blogged about them here - The wildflowers are blooming in the Kimberley

 As we travelled south during August the changing variety of wildflowers followed us. I was hard pressed to not keep saying "stop the car", as I know that walking only a few metres into this wonderland of flowers would reveal hidden treasures I couldn't see from the highway. But I also knew that my travelling companions didn't want to always be "stopping the car".... so sometimes I had to be content with "drive-by shots". 

These yellows and whites are yellow and white everlastings. The whites looked like snow across the ground spreading as far as you could see through the scrub. 

We did however decide to extend our trip by another day and night just so that I could visit Lesueur National Park. 

Named after Charles-Alexandre Lesueur, a natural history artist aboard the French ship Naturaliste during its 1801 expedition, Lesueur National Park covers 26,987 hectares and has a wide range of geological formations, landscapes and soil types. It is a biodiversity hotspot boasting an exceptionally diverse range of flora, with more than 900 species, comprising 10 per cent of the state's known flora, including seven species of declared rare flora, making it an important reserve for flora conservation. Much of Lesueur is covered by low heath, known as Kwongan by Aboriginal people - low scrub that a man can see over.

We approached Lesueur from  the north via the Coorow-Greenhead Road east off the Indian Ocean Drive just north of Greenhead, and then turning south onto Cockleshell Gully Road, or you can approach it from the south via Jurien and the Jurien East Road. The first part of our drive took us along a ridgeline with view of the coast and the Indian Ocean to the west.

From here you turn onto a 18.5 kilometre one-way bitumen road which takes you through the park. There are regular pull-over places where you can park and enjoy the scenery and take photos. The one-way road make these pull-overs very convenient as you don't have to worry about oncoming traffic.

Please note there is a $12 day entry vehicle pass payable by self-registration at the entrance or you can pre-purchase a 12 month WA Parks pass.

About a third of the way along the trail you will come to a day-use area where there is a 400 metre return wheelchair-friendly bitumen path where those less able can enjoy the wildflowers. You can also learn more about Lesueur on the information boards. 

From here you can follow the 2.5km Gardner circuit trail or the more challenging 4km Mt Lesueur walk trail to the summit of Mt Lesueur. Please allow approximately half a day to complete this moderate, at times challenging, walk which requires a good degree of fitness. Bring your own food, water, sun cream, wear a hat, good walking boots and take away your rubbish.

Please make sure you help prevent Dieback (Phytophthora spp.), which can be spread through the transfer of infected soil on your boots,  by cleaning your boots at the boot cleaning station. 

 Even if you decide you don't want to tackle the Mt Lesueur walk there will be plenty to see especially during wildflower time. Below you will see just a small selection.

Please note: I am not a botanist so I can't accurately name these flowers, but I will do my best. Some of them I will just give a family name, whereas others where I have given a botanic name I am fairly sure of their identification. 

 Banksias.... clockwise - Firewood Banksia (Banksia menziesii), either the Hooker's or Acorn Banksia, Violet Banksia (Banksia violacea)


Blue Leschenaultia (Lechenaultia biloba), Free-flowering Leschenaultia (Lechanaultia floribunda),  Catspaw, and Mangles Kangaroo Paw (Anigozanthos manglesii)

Reds - left to right from top left - Fringed Bell (Darwinia neildiana), Pink Poker, Grevillea, Bottlebrush, Clawflower, Cockies Tongues (Templetonia retusa), Scarlet Runner or Running Postman (Kennedia prostrata), Murchison Darwinia (Darwinia virescens), and Scarlet Featherflower (Verticordia grandis).

Pinks and purples - Hovea, Purple Tassels (Sowerbaea laxiflora), Blue Tinsel Lily (Calectasia cyanea), Veined Hakea (Hakea neurophylla), Coneflower, Myrtle, Pepper and Salt, Pipe Lilly, Starflower.

Creamy whites - I can't identify the first and last one on the top line, but the middle one is Smokebush, I think the first one on the second line is a Coneflower, White plume Grevillea (Grevillea leucopteris), Clematis, Hakea, Long-Eared Petrophile, Ribbed Hakea

I love the way that Clematis drapes over the bushes. 

 Petrophile, Dryandra, unknown (bottom left) and Banjine. 

Yellows - Horned Poison Bush (Gastrolobium polystachyum), Chittick, Catspaw, Wattle, Cottonheads, Hibbertia, Pea family, Spiny Synaphea (Synaphea spinulosa), Tailflower.

And maybe even orchids hiding in the undergrowth

And this one below which I promised last week to identify? This is Murchison Darwinia (Darwinea virescens), listed as uncommon in my Wildflower identification book, although as not threatened on DEPAW-Florabase. Grows in white or yellow sand in heathlands, August to December or January. Kalbarri to Northampton and Murchison. A prostrate shrub, 0.05-0.3 m high, Round red to pink flowers 25-40mm across.

It is truly magical when I find a wildflower I have never seen before.

Murchison Darwinia (Darwinea virescens)
 Lesueur is also the home to 52 species of reptiles, 122 species of birds (You might see a wedge-tailed eagle, one of Australia's largest birds of prey, whilst on the Mount Lesueur walk trail), 15 species of native mammals, and 29 species of jewel beetles - all of which are protected, like the one you see below - 

Jewel beetle on Dryandra at Lesueur National Park
Further along the one-way drive you come to Cockleshell Gully picnic area. Picnic benches, shaded by the surrounding tree canopy, and disabled-access toilets are provided. No fires are permitted as this park is extremely susceptible to fire. A walk trail leads 
 down into Cockleshell Gully. The first few hundred metres of the walk trail is wheelchair accessible.

From Lesueur it is only about 30 kilometres to Jurien. We chose to camp just north of Jurien at Sandy Cape (but that will be in another post).

Lesueur National Park is approximately 30 kilometres from Jurien Bay, a three hour drive north of Perth, Western Australia. 

For more information:
 Lesueur National Park downloadable brochure - DPAW-Lesueur
 Jurien Bay Tourism - Visit Jurien Bay

You might also like - 

Midwest, Western Australia
How to take great flower photos

Thank you so much for stopping by. I value your comments and look forward to hearing from you. I will try to visit your blogs in return. Have a wonderful week.

I am linking up to the link-ups below. Please click on the links to see fabulous contributions from around the world - virtual touring at its best!


Mosaic Monday 
Life Thru the Lens 

Lifestyle Fifty Monday Linkup 
Our World Tuesday

Through My Lens 
Wednesday Around the World at Communal Global
Worth Casing Wednesday
Travel Photo Thursday

The Weekly Postcard