Last Saturday evening we conducted another Group Watch survey for the Australian Platypus Conservancy. Thirteen Strath Creek Landcare members spent a very peaceful (ignoring the corellas and cockatoos) hour at 9 sites along the King Parrot Creek, scanning the water for signs of a platypus or rakali (water-rat).
No rakali was spotted, but one platypus was seen in Coonans Reserve and another at “Callandoon” not far from Burslems Bridge. At the post-survey get-together for refreshments in the reserve, there was a degree of cynicism expressed by the group that the only participants to spot a platypus were the two organisers of the event! Fortunately, a hasty and very bad photo was taken as “proof” of one of the sightings (see above).
Further upstream, a large contingent from Flowerdale Landcare conducted a similar survey and had more luck, with a total of 6 platypus being seen, including 3 at one observation point.
Strath Creek Landcare has now conducted 7 of these survey evenings since 2009, with the best result being in February 2013 when 5 platypus and one rakali were recorded.