Reserves of Triabunna, Tasmania

We know we walk on country where thousands of generations have lived and walked before.
We endeavour to use our current knowledge to be good custodians of this reserved land.
We welcome old and new knowledge.

Pelican Park Reserve

As you find the overgrown path around the edge of the locked wire farm gate into Pelican Park, it feels a bit like you are entering into the ‘Badlands’. The decaying post and wire fence lining the adjoining property is falling to pieces, with bits of wire, broken fence posts and tangled remnants threading through the vegetation. It portrays an air of old world and forgotten pursuits from the past, right on the edge of the township.

The gravel road leads into a forest of tall trees and bushes, the lower storey thick with Sagg running along the eastern side of the estuary. The growth is healthy and few access trails are evident into its width, as inviting glimpses of the estuary show through the foliage. A few magnificent ancient blue gums with shiny distorted limbs border the track, and convey a majestic presence in this remnant estuarine bushland. Pines have invaded some parts (the adjoining property heavily infested), and when you reach the open grassed TasWater area at the end of the track near the sewerage outlet, rows of old, tall pines follow around the border.

Yellow tailed black cockatoos are prevalent in the park as they send out their wailing calls and obviously find this location attractive with its store of pine cones to feed on. Small bush birds can be heard twittering in amongst the understorey and a flock of dusky woodswallows were active around a large eucalypt near the estuary on a recent visit.

Few other weedy species are evident in the forested area apart from patches of introduced pig face and some thistles. The shoreline opens up with salt bushes and other small estuarine plants. The views across the estuary reveal the presence of the water birds that favour this area. Several masked lapwings, swans, white faced herons and a pair of pied oystercatchers were easily spotted.

Its remote atmosphere and the forgotten nature of this parcel of Crown land, makes it unique, so close to the housing at its gateway. Looking from Pelican Point on the western side of the estuary, it offers an outlook of water and forest totally uninterrupted by any development or street lights at night.

Swampland on the TasWater area protects its farthest border and no doubt hides a great mass of aquatic life. Many frogs can be heard croaking in the deep matting of bulrushes that covers a great deal of this dormant water. It’s a somewhat forbidding environment as the tall pasture grasses nearby and almost hidden borders of most of this wetland makes one wary of attempting to reach it for fear of snakes lurking.

Photos by Rob Kelly and Andrew Menzies, 12/01/2022

Pelican Park Reserve Map