Any day in the bush is a good day. This was confirmed today when a dozen or so Latrobe Valley Field Naturalists braved the horrible forecast and journeyed to Uralla Nature Reserve in Trafalgar. In fact the bad weather didn’t eventuate and I don’t know about others, but by the end of the walk I was wishing I hadn’t worn so many clothes!
This small reserve, (45Ha), is on the edge of the town and is a real surprise. Silvertop and Mountain Grey Gum are probably the dominant eucs but the ‘rainforest’ gullies are peppered with a huge variety of non-euc species, vines, broad-leaved shrubs, tree ferns, mosses, lichens, epiphytes and fungi providing a wonderful biodiversity.
One of our first surprises was a Greenhood that had most of us scratching our heads. Turns out it was a familiar Cobra Greenhood, Pterostylis grandiflora that hadn’t quite fully developed. A little later in the walk some properly formed specimens were discovered and the problem solved.
We ticked several bird species but it just wasn’t a birding type of day. One bird list for the site details such species as Large-billed Scrubwren, Brown Gerygone, Rose Robin, Scarlet Honeyeater, etc so I think this is yet another spot to spend some more serious time.
Mosses and ferns proliferated and it was good to spot several patches of Dawsonia superba with the spore dispersing capsules in place.
Halfway up a steady incline someone thankfully found a good example of the common Vermillion Grizette fungus and we stopped to photograph it – between deep breaths. Amanita xanthocephala likes to associate with eucalypts and is thought to be quite toxic.
We had lunch with some Green Skinheads nearby – Cortinarius austrovenetus, also a euc forest specialist, but its distribution is not well known.
And from where do I get much of my new found knowledge of fungi? Why, from Sally of course. Great work Sally, and thanks!
PS: Corrections etc please - heyfieldwaresatwidebanddotnetdotau