And the bush has friends to meet him, and their kindly voices greet him, In the murmur of the breezes and the river on its bars,
And he sees the vision splendid of the sunlit plains extended, And at night the wonderous glory of the everlasting stars.

Banjo Paterson (1889)

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Maps of Western Australia

Before going too far with this blog, I think I better show some maps of where things are in Western Australia. Yes, I know it sounds like a boring geography lesson, but there's nothing that annoys me more (well there are) than someone naming places that I have no idea where they are. I don't live there, so I don't know where that is! Here's a couple maps to sort things out.

Most of my fauna survey work has been in the cool South-west region (SW), often near Perth. A lot of our surveys in mining areas has been in the hot and dry Pilbara region (PIL), with some occasional work in the Murchison (MUR) and Gascoyne (GAS).

These are basically the general regions of Western Australia. A cool, wet South-west getting hotter and dryer going inland and northwards, with a more tropical monsoon habitat in the Kimberleys. Each region has it's own special plants and animals.

Some of the typical habitats travelling northwards through WA. This is an area in the northern Goldfields, with eucalpyt woodlands, rock outcrops and salt lakes.

A view of the arid Gascoyne region, dry rocky plains with acacia shrublands with Ironstone outcrops. Lots of unique animals can be found on Ironstone outcrops, as these have acted almost like islands over the ages and limited the spread of animals across a sea of arid plains.

Further north, the Murchison area, more rock, scattered trees with spinifex grasslands. Great area for many arid animals species.

The region of major iron ore mining in WA, the Pilbara with lots of big rock gorges and spinifex grasslands. Many places for rock-loving animals.

The start of the south Kimberleys near Halls Creek. Beautiful rivers and creeks cutting through sandstone gorges with grass plains in between.

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