After more goodbyes this morning we set off for our last stop which is a Safari Lodge in the rain- forest. We stopped at the Moomoo café for coffee and this is a place which has a lot of character as you can hopefully see from the photos. Essentially we retraced our steps most of the way we came yesterday until the last part of the journey. It is amazing how different the countryside can look from the opposite direction. The plan was to arrive at Binna Burra Lodge before lunch in time to take a 3 hour guided walk at 1.30.
BB is situated in the World Heritage Lamington National Park and is famous for its spectacular scenery and varied walks. There are guided walks and also self-guided and there are lots of different distances. Binna Burra means “where the beech tree grows”. We went on a walk called Talluwallal which means place of many trees. In particular there is the Antarctic beech tree and here is apparently the most southerly example of this tree , which we saw.
Our guide the “Awesome” and very enthusiastic Mardi showed us quite a lot of interesting sights. The strangler fig tree which I mentioned yesterday has vines which grow downwards and twist anti clockwise. The reason for this is that they are essentially hollow and contain water and water flows anti-clockwise as it drains in the southern hemisphere. The reverse is of course true in the northern hemisphere so presumably any similar vines grow clockwise. The fig is unusual in that it is only fertilised by the fig tree wasp not a bee. The male eats into it and leaves his wings protruding and the female then arrives and they fertilise the fig.
We saw Padimelons ( a small Wallaby) and a Golden Trapdoor spider nest as well as a Funnel Web Spider’s nest. Now the Funnel Web is the most venomous spider in the world and its bite will kill a human if it has venom in it. Although the male venom is stronger, the male often bites without venom unlike the female. The female lives in her nest and never comes out. If she gets hungry and nothing is getting caught in her web to eat, she will often send out pheronomes to attract in a male and then eat him!!
We also saw the “Wait a while” plant which catches your clothing or even skin and grabs you and won’t let go. Apparently it is also known as the “Lawyer Plant” though personally I can’t see what is funny about that!
We are in a Sky Lodge which has a wonderful view uninterrupted for 180 degrees of forest mountains and even sea in the distance. As shown on a few earlier photos we watched an amazing sunset before supper.
Best of all, after supper we saw the beautiful (possibly awesome) Tawny frog-mouth featured, which was just sitting outside the lodge and let me get within about 6feet to photo him while staying as cool as you like. This is not an owl (contrary to my initial understanding).
Everything stops early here so we were back in the room soon after 9pm after another fun day.