Mini Blue Tide

An unusual mini Blue tide after the stormy seas earlier this week,only 3 Bluebottles ,11  Porpita,13 tiny Glaucus sp. [blue sea slug],a few Violet snails [Janthina ] and the tiniest Velella I have ever seen.

Porpita porpita has a disc like float & marginal tentacles for feeding.

Porpita …underside

These creatures living on the surface of the water are called neuston.Most are countershaded blue so when viewed by predators in the air they look deep ocean blue and from underneath they appear silvery.


Glaucus atlanticus   ….ventral surface up when floating.

Glaucus atlanticus ..dorsal view ,floats upside down




Another tiny creature washed ashore sometimes called a sea lizard sea slug creeps along the sea surface upside down  & feeds on Velella & Physalia.





Underside of Janthina ..showing its” Bubble raft” secreted from the foot. They also feed on the Bluebottles.









Physalia physalis….apparently some colonies have their floats aligned 45*left of the wind and others at 45* to the right so that not all will be stranded together.This one must have been an unlucky one !

Velella     By the Wind Sailor

Velella velella   has a disc shaped float which has feeding tentacles round the margin & a sail on top. 


Snorkelling Snippets

Snorkelling is beautiful now that the water is about 22*C,so for those of you who don’t venture into this fascinating underwater world here is a small selection of some of the sights we see ,it is quite addictive !

Thank you to Libby & Rick for some of the photos and we’d welcome others to add to the gallery.

Magpie Perch…..Cheilodactylus nigripes

Stripey…..Microcanthus strigatus


Gloomy Octopus…… Octopus tetricus

Stingray…..Dasyatis brevicuadata

Jewel Anemones …Corynactis australis

Waratah Anemones …..Actinea tenebrosa

Baked Bean Anemone…Phlyctenactis tuberculosa

Feather Duster worm…Sabellastarte australiensis

8 Armed Seastar..Meridiastra calcar

Sand or Shellgrit Anemone …Oulactis muscosa

White Ear….Parma microlepis

Sea Horse…Hippocampus abdominalis

Blue dragon ….Pteraeolida ianthina

Octopus ” garden “

Bennett’s Nudibranch…..Hypselodoris bennetti

Sea star….Uniophora granifera

11 Armed Seastar….Cosciniasterias muricata

Stingaree …Trygonoptera testacea

Sea Tulips …Pyura sp.

A Weedy Walk along the Shore

These Seaweeds or Marine Macroalgae were strewn on our local shores after the recent storms.

There are 3 main groups ,reds,greens & browns ,sometimes hard to distinguish when some of the browns look green & vice versa. If you’d like information on the seaweeds & sea grasses there is a small booklet called “Marine Macroalgae & Sea Grasses of the Bega Valley”  produced by BVSC.

After the Rains

I know this is under the heading of Creature Feature so I have included the Hooded & Red Capped Plovers that feast on the tiny arthropods in the weed & also use the  weed for shelter.

Hooded Plovers & dried Phyllospora

Red Capped Plover

Neptune’s Necklace….Hormosira banksii

Sea Lettuce… Ulva sp.

Sea Tulip and a Sea Grass [green]..Pyura sp & Posidonia

Red Algae …Amphiroa anceps [?] amongst Phyllospora

Sargassum Weed

Little Terns & other Beach Nesting Birds

At last the Little Terns are back at Mogareka to breed .Every summer these tiny seabirds come from eastern Asia & northern Australia to this area to nest & raise chicks before flying away again in February or March.

They are endangered because they nest on beaches and are  disturbed by people ,dogs,foxes & goannas….we see footprints of all.Sea gulls & Ravens also predate the eggs if the birds leave their nest [a scrape in the sand ].

If you like to be involved with Shorebird monitoring please let us know.


Little Terns with Non Breeding LT 

Red Capped Plover

Red Capped Plover distracting behaviour

Pied Oystercatcher already has a chick & has bred in the same location as previous years

Hooded Plovers foraging & at this stage avoiding parental responsibility !

Sooty Oystercatcher.. usually breed on rocky platforms

Courting Caspians
Thank you to Leo for the photo & sighting.

Tideline & Beyond

One walk ,one beach & this is only a selection of sightings.

Humpback Whale breaching

Sea Urchin showing Aristotle’s lantern


Egg casing of Cartrut Shells

Violet snail with Goose Barnacle passengers


A face only a mother could love…Porcupine Fish ?

Common Diving Petrel [ bill & cobalt blue legs ]

Pied Oystercatcher JE[ last season lost his foot due to fishing line ]

Goose Barnacle view of the beach

Pig Face

Red Capped Plover..preening

Spotted Pardalote – one of our favourite birds

We can’t resist sharing these images of one of our favourite small birds. Spotted Pardalotes nest in burrows they make, often near ground level. Paul Whitington has taken photographs and videos of them as they have nested for several years in a mound of earth on their property
Thanks for sharing some of your Southern forest life with us. Click on the link to see the videos.

A rare find on Bournda Beach

Naomi Shoobridge was really luck to fing a large and whole Paper Nautilus shell on Bournda Beach the other day. While we do occasionally see pieces of shell from these cephalopods, it’s very rare to find a whole shell as they are really fragile and soon get broken by the sea or seagulls foraging for the dead or dying squid inside.

Paper Nautilus Bournda Beach Photo Naomi Shoobridge

Goanna Hatchlings

Pete Constable filmed these very young hatchling Goannas emerging from their Termite mound nest near the Tarha Bermagui Road this week. When they are older they are very craggy, but how pretty as babies with their fresh skin!

Thanks for sharing the footage Pete, it’s a rare and lucky sighting.

Lace Monitor (Goanna) varanus varius
Photo Max campbell

Rare sighting of Koala near Aragunnu

A rare sighting of a koala has been captured on film north of Wapengo.

Tathra’s Michael Clarke was driving his truck to work in Bermagui just after 6am, when he took a bend south of Aragunnu Rd and was shocked to see the koala running down the road towards him.

Mr Clarke pulled his work truck over, taking a video of his encounter as he attempted to shoo the animal off the road.

“It’s good this happened, because it reassures people they are there,” the 40-year-old said.

“Not many people have seen them in the wild around here.

In the video, the koala can be seen walking along the side of the road, with Mr Clarke just metres away, before scampering up an embankment before climbing a small way up a nearby tree.

“It was awesome, he wasn’t in a hurry, but looked at me and scampered up the bank,” Mr Clarke said.

“I felt a bit of disbelief, because I drive that road a lot and most of the time you are on kangaroo watch.

“Afterwards I felt, sort of, elation because they are so elusive.”

While he drives the route regularly, this is the first time he has spotted a koala in the wild.

Koala near Aragunnu photo Michael Clark

Photo Michael Clark

Spot-tail Quoll or Wedge-tail eagle – who won?

We recently came across a magnificent image taken in the Guy Fawkes National Park up in northern NSW. Although this is outside our area, we do have both Spot-tailed quolls and Wedge tailed eagles living around here, so we thought you would like to see this as it is a remarkable image.

Quoll and Wedge-tail photo Dr Guy Ballard

This was taken with a motion sensitive camera and you can see the lure station in the photo. We are all speculating as to what happened before and after this image was taken – who would win this stand off?

We will let you know if we receive further information………..