|Moorabool River near Russel's Bridge|
This visit however, was not for fishing, but to do some bird watching, take in the scenery and find some new blog fodder, all of which we managed to achieve. The Moorabool at this point is somewhat different to other parts of either the Barwon or the Moorabool which I have seen so far. Firstly, it is bordered on both sides by privately-owned land. There are no designer walking-trails with weed-controlled verges, no areas of regionally appropriate re-vegetation or strategically-placed seats upon which to sit and enjoy the view.
|A few of the flock|
Also along the banks of the river are the remnant native trees which have not been cleared for farming. Their twisted roots protrude from the banks, reaching down to water level. There are also a surprising number of dead trees in between the living. They stand upright and bare, or lie across the river from bank to bank, making an informal crossing or weir depending on their height. I am informed that the presence of all this dead wood is integral to the structure of the river, providing a defence against the erosion which comes with flooding, holding the soil of the riverbank in place. Many of them appear to have been there for decades.
The birds are here as well. I counted nearly twenty species. This is no sanctuary, but there are more nests here in the eucalypts than I have seen on any other part of this river or the Barwon. Many are a mess of sticks high in the branches - belonging to larger birds, possibly magpies. I am told that one nest belonged to an eagle which is no longer present. The muddy cups of the mudlarks are here and there too. There is a koala in the upper story and bees buzz around a hive in a tree hollow.
|Bob and Craig|
As will I - and also to the river as there are parts downstream which I have yet to investigate and which I understand may contain some some natural features of interest.