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Training Begins

It has been action packed from the start here at Gnaraloo and while we haven’t had much time to take in the amazing scenery it has already had a big impact on us all with plentiful wildlife and stunning views!

We started our first official day at Gnaraloo with an orientation presentation from the inspiring Skip and then straight into our feral animal track identification training with the very knowledgeable and experienced Mike Butcher from Animal Pest Management Services (APMS).

We learnt how to identify the tracks of foxes, wild dogs, feral cats, goats, sheep, ghost crabs, native kangaroos, echidnas, spinifex hopping mice and birds by examining both the individual prints and track patterns. Mike explained the Gnaraloo Feral Animal Management Plan and the different methods used to monitor and control feral species such as sand plots, bait take and cameras. The main objective of the plan is the minimise predation of turtles and their nests using sustainable methodologies.

Feral track identification
Mike Butcher (APMS) helping us ID wild dog and goat tracks

To practice our track identification skills Mike took us on a 4WD tour of Gnaraloo Station. During one of the stops we were lucky enough to see a whale blow just offshore behind the reef! In addition, there were many kangaroos and birds on our drive home at dusk. We found that in looking for tracks and trying to identify them we had suddenly became aware of the surrounding wildlife. We are looking forward to putting our new skills into practice when we start beach surveying!

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