|In 2008, I didn't spent Christmas at home; rather, I visited the Tropical Ecology Research Facility of the University of Sydney. At this research station, a MSc student of mine, Bas Bruning, was doing an internship on the Cane toad, Bufo marinus. The short period around Christmas proved to be a good time to visit Bas, seeing what he was studying. Meanwhile, I got a nice impression of a tropical wet-dry ecosystem.
The pages below all illustrate some aspect of my short visit. The first gives a photo-impression of the research station, and what insects can be seen at or around the station. The second and third page illustrate the neighborhood of the research station. This is dominated by flood plains and level open woodland. Finally, the fourth page documents our short stay in Kakadu National Park. In addition to wide flood plains, Kakadu sports beautiful rocky outcrops. The aboriginals embellished these with marvelous paintings of local wildlife, some of which are shown here.
Naturally, a stay of seven days is far too short to see all nice ties of the area, yet I got a crash course in the wildlife of Northern Territories Top end. The weather was reasonably cooperative, despite the fact that the wet season was fully on.