Monsieur recently bought a small print of the six Nyoongar seasons. It is an excellent way to understand the weather patterns in the south western part of WA.
April and May represent Djeran season, “Djeran is marked by cooler nights, dewy mornings and when leaves fall to the ground. Ngari (salmon) are prolific”
It is a beautiful time of year, which signals the end of the intense heat of the summer months. The welcome change, however, is also a harbinger of cooler and wetter weather to come. There is a chill in the air in the evenings and overnight, a flurry of bird life starting to build their winter nests yet it is still pleasantly warm during the days.
One of our favourite walking spots is Star Swamp, an area of preserved and protected bushland just down the road from our home near the coast. We tend to avoid it during summer when it is simply too hot. We are also not keen on encountering any local snakes who might be sunning themselves but by early autumn the conditions are perfect. There is an overall loop (the Heritage Trail) that extends right round the reserve but in between there are a variety of smaller trails with delightful names such as the Fairy Wren Trail, the Paperbark Trail and the Jarrah Trail.
As their names suggest, many of the trails take you through tree-lined pathways. We saw a large number of the pretty little fairy wrens the other day darting between the trees and bushes. Although also a Quenda habitat area, we have yet to spot any of the little marsupials though our friends spied one on a walk a while ago.
Over Easter the banksias were in full bloom with their distinctive spiked orange flowers (they do vary in colour depending on the type).
Another interesting feature is the wealth of historical information provided along the trails. You learn a lot about the local history, how the local aboriginal groups lived with their innate knowledge of the land plus the early history of European settlement in the area.
At the Hope Street entrance to Star Swamp you can also find one of the oldest olive trees in Perth. Apparently it dates back about 160 years and is still producing a large crop of luscious-looking black olives!
Sadly, as you may be able to see from some of the photos, there is an ever-present threat of bushfires (alas often deliberately started) and one part of the Heritage Trail is fenced off to allow the bushland to recover from a recent fire a few weeks back.
The bush is however remarkably resilient and soon new shoots will start to appear. We feel incredibly lucky to have access to this beautiful natural bush reserve so close to our home in the midst of the Perth urban sprawl.
Copyright © 2022 Rosemary Thomas Le Chic En Rose