Mt Field National Park
We arrived at Mt Field National Park (Tasmania) early Sunday afternoon with the intention of hiking the Three Falls Walk. This a 2 1/2 hour circuit that connects the very popular Russell Falls with Lady Barron and Horseshoe Falls.
Tasmania was in the middle of a heat wave that week and the temperature had just hit 39 degrees Celsius. I had little interest in hiking, or doing anything outside, so convinced John that we should checkin to our accommodation.
We signed up to take part in that evening’s ranger lead walk in Mt Field National Park in search of Eastern Quolls, hoping that by 9pm the temperature would be more pleasant.
We met up with Ranger Emma out the front of the Visitor’s Centre who told us about some of the native animals that could be found at Mt Field National Park.
Before heading into the forest, Emma provided us with red cellophane to cover our torches. We hadn’t been previously aware of it but apparently you should always avoid using a torch with white light as is scares the animals and can affect their night vision.
The temperature had peaked at 39.6 degrees Celsius that day and the animals were obviously feeling it as much as I had. The forest was a lot quieter than normal and despite our best efforts, we didn’t see a single animal all night!
Regardless of our unsuccessful night of animal spotting, the walk was still enjoyable. Ranger Emma was very knowledgeable and obviously loved her job.
It was such a relaxing experience to sit and listen to the forest gradually come alive around you.
The Eastern Quoll is about the same size as a domestic cat. Their thick coats are covered in white spots and can either be black or fawn in colour.
Unlike the larger Spotted-tailed Quoll, the Eastern Quoll does not have spots on its tail. They also differ from other quolls in that they only have four toes on their hind feet.
Quolls are solitary, nocturnal animals. They spend their nights hunting for insects and small mammals such as rabbits, mice and rats. Their role in keeping these pests under control is invaluable.
Eastern Quolls can be found throughout Tasmania including Mt Field National Park.
The Eastern Quoll has been extinct on mainland Australia since the 1960’s and can now be only found in Tasmania. In 2018 the World Wildlife Fund plan to relocate quolls back to the mainland.
*Buy a torch with a red bulb or create your own using inexpensive red cellophane and a rubber band.
*Mt Field National Park’s Ranger led activities are advertised on a board out the front of the Visitors Centre each day. The Rangers are really helpful and are happy to provide you with more information.
*This walk is not for you if you struggle to walk on uneven surfaces in the dark, or if you cannot sit still and not talk for long periods of time.
*As always when driving in Tasmania you should take extra care between dusk and dawn. Tasmanian Wildlife Matters predict that more than 500,000 marsupials, birds and reptiles are killed on Tasmania’s roads’ each year.
*For other activities in Tasmania, read 20 Must Do Activities When Visiting Tasmania.
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Searching for Quolls in Mt Field National Park Tasmania
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