Day 7

Today was our last day in the Daintree, but we had so much plotting to do. Our first trip was out to the river mouth but couldn’t find the plot. We probably spent 30 minutes looking around for our plot that was meant to be quite easy but couldn’t find them.

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Day 6

“I really feel like I’ve experienced a day of a mangrove scientist”. Wow, what a brutal day. Decomposition was uber exciting to see today. You can observe what was a 20-metre, 500 kg mangrove turned in to a crumbled stump in 4 years. This was due mostly to shipworms, boring snails, weevils and other invertebrates. This did make it challenging with logs collapsing under my feet! In one of those moments I put my hand in wasp nest and got stung on the back of my neck as a reminder.

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Day 5

Today was our day off! While we had the day without doing mangrove research, there was also a lot of things on the cards, so it was just as busy. This morning instead of a cassowary walking through accommodation, a big lace monitor made his way through.

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Day 4

We counted more trees, measured their height, measured their girth and measured their weight (well not really, but it all comes back to it). “Think of the carbon!”. In that time, we also saw a lace monitor hiding in a tree, an awesome wait-a-while cricket, green orb spider, garfish, mud-crabs… and some mangroves. I got in trouble after that from Jock “less exploring, more working"! 

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Day 3

While it was hard to sleep in, getting up early had it’s perks being one of the few to see a male cassowary and his three chicks making their way through the camp, something many tourists come here to see. We got away a few hours later at 8:30 heading to Daintree River Cruise. Local elders graced our small group with a traditional Welcome To Country and smoking ceremony using native materials.

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Day 2

Staying overnight after my late flight in I had an opportunity to see a very small part of Cairns in the morning before getting picked up. I knew the top of my “hitlist” was the Cairns Aquarium, recently open in 2017. A beautiful new multi-story aquarium. On the way there I walked past the largest tree absolutely jam-packed with fruit-bats. These creatures do not use echolocation, as their eyesight and hearing are quite refined.

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Day 1

After a long day of flying I landed at 6pm and made my way in to Cairns. I wanted to burn off some sugar and iron out the creases so went to the gym for a little run. The “Lagoon”, the only safe swimming spot in Cairns, was a great relaxing treat after the workout. While still wrapping my head around an early start and the time difference I thought it was best to get something to eat at a normal time.

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