This is our kitchen bench, all ready for each day’s potential adventures! We had So Much tourist information that it was almost overwhelming. After a little bit of time at the table, together, we sorted and sifted through and created several piles of information which I laid out in a vague order, for the week.
After all day travelling and getting organised the day before, we decided to take it a little easier for our second day in Cairns. A trip to Hartley’s Crocodile Adventures to start the day and maybe go into Cairns later on.
The ‘highlights’ of the visit with the crocodiles: the beautiful storks with blue-black heads, black and white bodies and red legs! Wow! I really couldn’t get my head around how these birds evolved. But they were rather glorious.
I think there were a lot of challenging things about this place, from my comfort level, rather than highlights. I was very disturbed to learn that crocodiles were being purpose-bred – good for the environment but distressing from the perspective of Handbags and Shoes. I was quite distressed about the ‘fashion’ factor of killing crocodiles. Another thing which I found upsetting was the koala and kookaburra enclosure: a lovely open ‘pen’ with 3 koala’s in trees, asleep, and 3 kookaburras perched on rocks and branches on the ground. The kookaburras looked really clean and couldn’t fly and I found that sad.
We had a short tour of the crocodile breeding area, after learning that more deaths occur each year from Swan attacks than crocodile attacks, and I found it fascinating to see all the young crocs together. David and I had seen similar sights with Alligators in Florida, many years ago, so it wasn’t new but it was still compelling.
During the crocodile boating tour we learned that fully grown adult males have almost no enemies. They either die of old age or are challenged by another fully grown adult and maybe killed. The challenge is to live at all because there are some seriously pesky birds which raid the eggs in nests.
I felt that I’d learned quite a lot of interesting things at Hartley’s Crocodile Adventures. I also felt a sense of compassion and awe for the crocodiles.
We spend the late afternoon and evening in Cairns, having dinner and exploring the markets and shops. Most interesting was the Ukulele Festival - ukulele players are Very Enthusiastic and Fun People! One group we watched even played a Status Quo (one of my favourite old bands) song! What a hoot!