Searching for Platypus in Atherton.

Atherton Travel Blog

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Nyleta Wetlands sign


We had heard that we might be able to spot some Platypus's, a real iconic Auzzie aquatic animal, at a small stream near the old railway station, now that sounded exciting, so after we has checked out of the caravan park, we headed straight there.

Hasties swamp sanctury, Nyleta Wetlands
The old station proved to be quite interesting too, there were a couple of ancient old carriages parked on the rails outside the station building, in a very dilapidated state, but the old building looked quite solid and had a viewing platform built out to one side, specially, I think for watching for Platypus in the stream behind. We looked and looked but saw none. Then a little old gentleman appeared from the station house, he looked rather like Santa Claus minus the red suit and sack of presents, he told us he was housesitting the station, as it had been bought to be remade into a restaurant, using the old carriages as dining rooms as well as the outdoor dining on the platform itself. A great idea which should go well when it refurbishing is finished. Old Santa also suggested that we take the short pleasant walk along the stream over the bridge and back up the other side in our search for Platypus. Seemed like a good thing to do so we wandered off long the way. Didn't see any platypus but we did see lots of ducks and a cloud of small green and red finches sipping on the nectar of many flowers, then we spotted the turtles on the muddy bank of the stream, loads of them of all sizes, they quickly slid into the stream as we approached, nice to see them though as we never did spot any platypus even though there are many residents in the creek and the big pond, but Platypus are very shy and quiet so  they are hard to spot. Maybe next time. Said goodbye to Santa and were on our way to Hasties Swamp a wildlife Sanctuary not far out of town, that Santa had suggested we might enjoy visiting.

Hasties Swamp is a small lake set in swampy land ideal for water fowl, we got there and to my amazement found that the area was called Nyleta  Wetlands. Such a surprise to see that name, because my daughters' name is Nyle and I thought the spelling was so original; I just had to take a photo of the sign for her.

We climbed up into the big hide and observed the ducks and egrets and other birds all around on the water, then we spotted a tiny little bird diving among the reeds. After we had searched the photos of birds likely to be seen we came to the conclusion that we were watching a Pygmy Goose. Had never even heard of them before. Unfortunately we didn't see any Platypus here either, these wee animals are too allusive for us.

We then headed off towards Cairns down the Gillies Highway and had a pleasant drive to Edmonton a small town not far from Cairns. Stopped for lunch in the mall and decided to try and stay overnight here, mainly on account of the fact that I have an old friend living in Edmonton in Canada, but the motel we asked at and the caravan park cabins had no vacancies, forcing us to drive on the city, as the Castaways backpackers we had stayed in before, was also full up we went in search of a nice motel for the night and found a good place two doors away with a swimming pool. Quickly we were changed and in for a swim, surprisingly the water was salty, it’s a sea water pool! This was by far the most comfortable place we stayed at during our holiday, The name is Adobe Motels, they also make the best Pizza in Cairns or so they say!

Went out for the evening to the local pub called the Cock and Bull, a great place very popular serving good food and having lots of poker machines, so I was happy, even more so when I won a small kind of prize; a chance to spin the wheel. Now there were some great prizes on the wheel like meals and drinks and good money, but sadly I didn't win them, my spin said have another turn, so I did, then I won $5 measly dollars! Still it was $5 I didn't have before so it was all good. Enjoyed a lovely meal, plus a sensational dessert; Banff Pie with ice-cream and cream, so fattening but so very yummy.
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Nyleta Wetlands sign
Nyleta Wetlands sign
Hasties swamp sanctury, Nyleta Wet…
Hasties swamp sanctury, Nyleta We…
photo by: Biedjee