2022 Entries Closed
2022 Entries Closed
This year we have over 500 runners joining us for an adventure in the Avon Valley.
It is almost a full house with only 10 trackers left (required for solo and team entries).
With a year behind us now we have been able to fine tune some details and added some great features.
- More entertainment
- Better lighting for the morning and evening
- More course access
- Up to teams of five
- An inclusive 6km hike option
- More event prizes
- Partnership with an interstate event
- Bigger and better aid station experiences
- Better pre and post event transport options
- More detailed results
- Growing the recycled materials concept i.e. New Transcend caps
- A bigger finish zone with more shelter
We look forward to giving it our best to deliver an epic adventure for you all. Thanks again for supporting the Transcend Trails Team and helping to grow the Perth Trail Community. Please take the time to read the following details so you and your crew can get the maximum experience. Rise above, go beyond.
Thank you to all our sponsors who have helped make this run viable and have contributed greatly to building the Transcend experience.
A very special mention to our 2022
We have been working with these legends for a long time now. They are a 120% behind this event and have helped to make it a special adventure for you all.
They are the specialists in Perth property!
If you need someone to manage or sell your properties check them out.
UON - Energy for every future
Supporting large scale projects with hybrid energy.
Health professionals that help you achieve all your trail running and health related goals.
Have a legal question? Don't be shy to give them a call and ask. If they can't help they will point you in the right direction.
Tribe & Trail - Western Australia's #1 store for trail running gear and accessories.
Fire Stryker - The latest technology for putting out fires quick and eco friendly.
Nowhereman Brewing Co - The ultimate craft beer!
Tarkine Running - The most eco shoe in the world
Also a massive thank you to all the helpers at every point of the adventure! Without these champions we would not be able to deliver this event. Make sure you thank them as you run past them on the day, especially if it is wet and cold!
These legends will be at the finish line zone. They have 1,000 plants to sow along the Avon River bank. We have over 500 runners to help them!
We would love to see more indigenous Australian runners on the trails. Help us provide them a pathway to running. You can donate to the our campaign. We have already contributed $5,000 to the cause and it has been great to see some other runners promote it as well.
Solo runners and leg 3 & 4 runners pass through Paruna Wildlife Sanctuary which is just one of the amazing land parcels that AWC manage. They are doing an amazing job at looking after threatened native fauna.
Please make sure all your teams details are completed by Sunday the 12th of June. We have a number of uncompleted teams at present.
Please note: If someone is unable to continue due to being injured or not meeting the aid station cut off time, the next runner may still commence their leg providing they have the mandatory gear. The team will be issued a new tracker and they will be moved into a non competitive category.
Team / Duo Members: You may meet your Leg 5 runner at the Cobbler Pool Road crossing and join the runner for the last few hundred meters. Unite and run as one!
Last year we had a runner injure themselves on leg 2 and they wrote an email to us thanking us because of the mandatory kit they were able to address the issue and exit the course without too much discomfort despite it being freezing cold and pouring with rain.
We will announce if you need the thermal top on race day at the Saturday briefing. In 2021 it was required. Please note teams can pass on their mandatory equipment to their running mate at the changeover checkpoint providing it fits and is suitable for them. Don't forget to pass on the tracker and car keys also!
We unfortunately have a very tight window to check mandatory gear this year... We recommend doing the pre check or getting to the opening ceremony on the Saturday as early as possible.
If you want to skip the line at the Saturday race briefing you can do a pre-event mandatory gear check at the following locations:
Tribe & Trail in Maylands Tues 14th of June - Fri 24th of June. Please note Tribe & Trail will also be at the opening ceremony and finish line. They have an extensive trail range available for you if you need any last minute gear. You can also checkout their online store.
For those south of the river Running Works in Hilton is also helping us out: Mon 20th of June - Fri 24th of June between 9:30am - 4pm and on Friday up until 7pm. That way if you need anything you can probably get it, then and there.
Despite having your mandatory equipment already checked off please note you will still be required to attend the Saturday Opening Ceremony at Guildford Grammar School to pick up your tracker and race pack. We do a group photo of your team for the trackers so try and get everyone there. If you do a pre check you will need to bring your certificate of approved mandatory equipment with you to check in. You can find the certificate checklists on the mandatory gear page.
Saturday 25th of June Guildford Grammar School Foundation Pavilion
3:00pm Coffee, Pizza & Crepe Vans are on site
3:00-4:30pm Gear checks / bib pick up / tracker set up
4:30pm Boodjar Biddi Acknowledgement to Country and Spirit Dance
4:50-5:00pm Sponsor Recognition
5:00pm Mandatory Race Directors' Event Briefing
There are a lot of novices joining us on the day and the opening ceremony is a great opportunity to get some last minute tips. Don't be shy, ask questions we are there to help!
Lets be honest, we run big distances so we can indulge with some fine food and beverages.
To help you pre fuel for the big adventure at the opening ceremony we will have on site:
These guys know how to do a wood fired pizza!
They have the best crepes in Perth
East African Coffee
This is a good opportunity to pre-purchase your coffee vouchers for the start line as there is no phone reception for the EFTPOS machine at Walyunga National Park.
Please support these vendors who have made the time and effort to come to the event
YOU CAN PURCHASE
Transcend branded TARKINE cap $30 (Opening ceremony SPECIAL)
These caps have turned out awesome and they are made from recycled materials!
100% Recycled Transcend Shirts $30 (Opening ceremony SPECIAL)
Each shirt is made from shredded recycled cotton and also contains 5 plastic bottles which helps with their breathability and durability.
5:00am Entry to Walyunga National Park Gate will be opened
5:15am Bus Departs Midland Train Station for runners with pre-purchased tickets
5:45am Bus Arrives at Walyunga National Park
Toilets are located in both car parks. Don't forget your event National Park parking tokens in your race pack.
Spectators and fellow team runners: It will be dark bring your head lamp.
6:25am Place your unwanted jumper, trousers, beanies and scarfs in the St Vinnies donation bag (optional)
6:30am Hermitude Searchlight drop happens and the ADVENTURE STARTS!!!
Your team then has to hold a pace of 13min/km or faster on average to avoid aid station cut-offs.
11:00am-5:00pm Toodyay Friends of the River Tree Planting Site opens up at Cobbler Pool, you are encouraged to go and assist planting the 1,000 trees!
11:00am 6km Hike / Fun Run Gear check opens at Cobbler Pool
12:00pm First potential finisher
12:00pm Nowhereman Brewing Co and Food Vendors fire up
12:00pm Live music kicks off
12:29pm Legendary Runner Status cut off (Sub 6 hours)
1:00pm 6km Hike / Fun Check in closes
1:30pm 6km Hike / Fun Run starts at Cobbler Pool
3:30pm Final 6km Hiker / Runner expected
4:00-4:45pm Award presentations - Have to be present to collect prizes as we will not be posting them in the mail.
5:00pm Walyunga National Park gate closes
5:00pm First Bus leaves Cobbler Pool, to take people back to Midland Train Station. Tickets can be purchased via Events Plus, approx 1 hr trip.
7:00pm Second Bus leaves Cobbler Pool, to take people back to Midland Train Station. Tickets can be purchased via Events Plus, approx 1 hr trip.
7:28pm The Prospector Train leaves Toodyay and arrives at Midland 8:20pm
8:30pm Cut off time for last runner
If driving home please take care
- Lots of wildlife
- Country roads
- Tired and sore muscles
- Don't drink and drive!
Please note we will get aid station drop bags to the finish line for collection ASAP. If you don't get yours they will be at Tribe & Trail in Maylands from Tuesday for a few days.
Monday Avon Link Train leaves Toodyay 6:50am and arrives at Midland 7:50am
Monday Merredin Link Train leaves Toodyay 3:06pm and arrives at Midland 4:00pm
Aid Station 1 Avon Ridge 12.5km
Lead: 7:34 am
Cut Off: 9:16 am
Aid Station 2 Walyunga Scenic Lookout 25km
Lead: 8:31 am
Cut Off: 11:45 am
Aid Station 3 Paruna Nissen Hut 36km
Lead: 9:28 am
Cut Off: 14:15 pm
Aid Station 4 Valley Campground 52km
Lead: 10:51 am
Cut Off: 17:48 pm
Finish Line Cobbler Pool 65km
Lead: 11:54 am
Cut Off: 20:30 pm
Please note due to safety reasons cut offs will be strictly applied.
Please return your tracker to the aid station if you don't make the cut off.
Every runners' entry fees for the National Parks and Paruna Wildlife Sanctuary have been paid for by Transcend. We have provided you with parking vouchers in your starter packs.
Map link: Walyunga National Park (Start Line)
There are two large carparks. The Walyunga Pool Carpark is 900m from the race start. You can walk along the course to get back there. Please note the park gates close at 5pm. If you intend to leave your car at the start but are unsure if you will get back there by 5pm it is ok to leave your car overnight, you MUST however put a note on your dash to say are in Transcend, otherwise they will do a search party and we will have to deal with some unhappy park rangers.
You also have the option of parking your car outside the Walyunga NP gate. Please note it is 2.5km from the gate to the race start at Boongarup Pool. If you choose this option please walk down the parallel gravel track rather than on the road. It will also be dark so you will need your headlamp.
WE RECOMMEND: Pre purchasing a bus ticket, parking at Midland Train station and getting dropped off at Walyunga National Park by the bus. Or car pool in a similar fashion. Get a ticket from the event plus registration link.
Brigadoon, Cathedral Ave
This is not an aid station but a great viewing point. Please take care coming and going as there is a section of road only wide enough for one car. There is lots of parking available. Please note this is only 6km in on the run course.
Bells Falls Lookout
Brigadoon, Campersic Rd
This is also not an aid station but a beautiful viewing point on your way to Aid station 1. Please note there is minimal parking here and Campersic is a busy road.
Map Link: Avon Ridge (Aid Station 1)
Brigadoon, Rollinghills Drive
Please avoid parallel parking as we need to maximise the cars being parked in this region.
There are very limited parking bays at this site. You will have to park on the verge. Please try and stay on the west side of Rollinghills Drive and be mindful of properties driveways.
Map Link: Walyunga Scenic Lookout (Aid Station 2)
Brigadoon, Ewing Rd
Please be careful on the way to this location. The road has lots of bends, inclines and declines and a single lane bridge. Ewing Rd is a flat fairly straight and well maintained short gravel Rd. At the end there is a parking area. This is a beautiful viewing point and the runners come past it. Once this is full we will use an overflow parking zone within Paruna Wildlife Sanctuary. If you need to use the overflow parking please be mindful as you drive through the gate and may crossover with runners and spectators.
Gidgegannup, Copley-Dale Rd
Copley-dale Rd is sealed, however it is quite narrow and windy, please take care. There is a gravel fire track (not an official road) to the left that follows the Paruna wire fence. This is 800m long and is 2-way and narrow. Please drive very slowly.
Morangup, Forty One Mile Rd
Please bring your National Park ticket from your starter pack. If you don't have one you will be required to pay for park entry. This is a long slow gravel road drive down to Valley Campground. Tip stay right at the fork in the road to stay on forty one mile road. Drummonds and Cec Burrows Campsites are in the opposite direction. It will take approximately 30 min to drive in. There is lots of wildlife in this region and allow for 2-way traffic.
Map Link: Cobbler Pool (Finish Line)
Morangup, Cobbler Pool Rd
Please note Lovers Lane can have a section of road that goes under water.... There is a water depth marker there so make note of that before attempting to cross. You can go via Toodyay to avoid this hazard. At Cobbler Pool drive past the main gate and enter the second gate where a volunteer will be pointing you in the right direction. You will enter a large field with a ring road. Please drive slowly and check the grass before parking in it. Please be mindful after this carpark turnoff, further down the road there is a runner crossing, just before the train level crossing.
In collaboration with Toodyay Friends of the River we encourage all finishers and others to go down and help them plant 1,000 trees on the river bank at the finish line. We are hoping with 500 runners involved in the event we can make this happen!
Start Line Walyunga NP
- This is a cool place to make our own mini Zegama and cheer people up the the Bells Falls climb.
Avon Ridge - Aid 1
Walyunga Scenic Lookout - Aid 2
Nissen Hut Copley-Dale Rd - Aid 3
Valley Campground Avon Valley National Park - Aid 4
Cobbler Pool Finish Line
See parking above for more detail
What to do if not at aid stations:
- Check out Newcastle Gaol and Connors Mill
- Be a champ and help with planting the 1,000 trees at Cobbler Pool
- Take the kids to the Miniature Railway, Fairy Tale Farm, Christmas 360, Cola Cafe in Toodyay
- Come and play some games i.e. jenga, enjoy the music, food and drinks at Cobbler Pool.
If you have any allergies or lifestyle diet preferences we advise you to use the drop bag system to make sure we don't contaminate you unexpectedly.
There will be a coffee van at the start line. Bring cash or pre purchase coffee vouchers at the opening ceremony. There will be no supplies at this location.
Tailwind Orange Flavour non - caffeinated
David Bryant the Dietitian's famous banana bread
Other high carb foods
Tailwind Orange Flavour Non - caffeinated
Moondyne Joe Damper
Other high carb foods
Showers (be mindful it is tank water)
Tailwind Orange Flavour Non - caffeinated
Pasito / Coke
Other high carb foods
Tailwind Orange Flavour Non - caffeinated
Pasito / Coke
Chicken & Corn Soup
Homestyle Choc Chip Cookies
Other high carb foods
Tailwind Recovery Protein Powder at the Tribe & Trail tent
Tailwind Orange Flavour Non - caffeinated
Pasito / Coke
Other high carb foods
3x Food vans
- Chips on a Stick WA
- Wes Truckn Burgers
- Islander Malay
East African Coffee Van
Nowhereman Brewing Co
Please bring them to the opening ceremony and place them in the correct designated zones.
We will attempt to get as many drop bags back to presentations as possible. Drop bags not collected will be taken to Tribe & Trail and will be available for collection on Tuesday (they are closed Monday) 28th of June for 1 week only.
Please clearly label your name and race number on the drop bag.
Drop bags should be no larger than 30cmx30cm.
Coles/Woolies Cooler Bags are ideal.
For your finisher bag you may use a slightly larger backpack.
Drop Bag 1: Aid Station 1 - Avon Ridge (12.5km), Rollinghills Drive
Drop Bag 2: Aid Station 2 - Walyunga Scenic Lookout (25km), Ewing Rd
Drop Bag 3: Aid Station 3 - Nissen Hut in Paruna (36km), Copley-Dale Rd
Drop Bag 4: Aid Station 5 - Valley Campground, Avon Valley National Park (52.5km), Forty One Mile Rd
Drop Bag 5: Finish Line - Cobbler Pool (65km)
We are inviting fellow runners, family and friends to send your buddy some Trail Mail, they will receive this at Aid Station 4 giving them that extra push to make it to the finish line. Send us your Trail Mail (template below) by the 23rd of June or drop it in the Trail Mail box at the opening ceremony.
Send Trail Mail to firstname.lastname@example.org (only the below template accepted)
FIRST AID: Floreat SLSC will be manning all of our aid stations and finish line with first aiders. Hopefully no one will require their assistance.
HIKING POLES: Are permitted we just ask you to take care especially in the early stages of the race when it is a bit congested.
EMERGENCY: Your tracker has an SOS button which will send a message to the two race directors and tracker coordinator if you are in need of help.
If we can't identify your location you can use your Emergency Plus App to give us or if a severe emergency 000.
TRAIN CROSSINGS: Please stay well clear of level train crossings at
1.) Bells Rapids, use the designated Orlov Tunnel,
2.) Cobbler Pool Rd at the runners crossing,
3.) Cobbler Pool finish line Zone.
4.) Anywhere along the course. The trains are particularly quite in the valley, fog can make them hard to see and they approach very quickly!
FOOD & FLUIDS: The aid station team will control all water / Tailwind reservoirs at the aid stations. Please note no runner is to touch these. Food will also be distributed by the aid station team. Please be patient they will assist you as fast as possible. You are required to bring your own cup or use your own bottles as no cups will be provided.
QUARANTINE: If you have been advised to self isolate please follow that advise and do not attend the event.
SIGNS & SYMPTOMS: If you have signs and symptoms that correlate with COVID-19 please do not attend the event and go get tested.
They will be released after entries close on Sunday the the 12th of June. You will have plenty of time to label your bags.
Race numbers must be on your outermost layer. It might be best to get a race number belt so you don't have to pin it to your rain jacket. Teams please note you will only receive one bib per team so have a plan if you want a quick transition. Please have your race number facing forwards at all times. If you withdraw from the event please also hand in your tracker.
TRACKERS: They work off a Telstra 3G system and ping data every ~1 min. If the tracker can't get signal which is only a few small sections of the course it will hold the data and send it when it can. Please note the first 7km of the event has little to no reception so they will start to work after that.
The trackers are already on. Do not turn them off we will do it post event.
If trackers are lost or damaged please note you will be charged a replacement fee of $250. Some trackers may not work - it is rare but does happen. We will do our best to identify this and issue you a new tracker at the next aid station.
LIVE RESULTS: You will be able to keep an eye on your runner using the live tracker link. That should help with your planning.
The link to the live tracking will be released closer to the race.
Thanks to everyone that has respected staying off the private properties in the lead up to this event. We have had some issues with Paruna but otherwise it has been pretty good. It is also for your own safety as they do cull destructive pests in these areas i.e. wild boars, foxes. Getting these land owners on board will also help us secure the event location for future years.
GPX Files Options
Full 65km Course
Full 65km Course + Aid Stations
6km Hike / Fun Run
We highly recommend you to upload these on to your watch and/or phone. Please google how to upload it to your device, it is fairly straight forward and a great thing to know how to do. GAIA maps free version can also do it.
There will be some cameras and photographers on course. Don't forget to smile and get those dramatic arm and leg movements happening! The images will be provided free of charge but we do ask you tag Transcend and the photographer in return.
PRESENTATIONS: 4pm at Cobbler Pool (Finish Line)
- Winners are to be present to collect prizes
- Please note we also have a number of spot prizes to give out. We will simply draw out race numbers.
King of the Mountain
Queen of the Mountain
Top 3 Female Ultra
Top 3 Male Ultra
Top 3 Teams
Female / Male / Mixed
Top 3 Duo
Female / Male / Mixed
Top 3 Female 6km
Top 3 Male 6km
There are also some community draw prizes to be done at the event and post the event.
Each age group has been assigned a fauna and flora Totem and a destructive pest or weed.
To find out more there are detailed descriptions below.
Fauna: Red Tailed Black Cockatoo
Flora: Marri Tree
Pest: Feral Cat
Flora: Eucalyptus Wandoo
Pest: European Fox
Fauna: Western Pygmy Possum
Flora: Melaleuca Radula
Weed: Black Berry Bush
Fauna: Wedge-Tailed Eagle
Pest: European Rabbit
Fauna: Western Brush Wallaby
Weed: Bridal Creeper
Flora: Fringed Lilly
Pest: Wild Pig
Weed: Arum Lily
Flora: Red Ink Sundew
Pest: Wild Goat
Red-tailed black cockatoo (Karak): A Large, all black and glossy parrot with a a bright undertail. Males are fully black with a bright red undertail. Females are speckled with yellow on the head and neck, and slightly barred on the body. Undertail feathers and barred and yellow to orange.
- These birds are likely to be seen in small groups in family groups and small flocks, eating the seeds of eucalypts, hakeas and banksias. Their Noongar name comes from the sound of its call, often described as a harsh or grating ‘karraak’.Interestingly, red-tailed black cockatoos that feed in the tree canopy do so with their left feet. Red-tailed black cockatoos from the NT (who feed on the ground) use both feet without preference. Are all tree dwelling red-tails left footed?
Marri tree: Often confused with eucalypts, this tree is fast growing, and can reach 60m in height and 2m in diameter. The bark is rough and tessellated and will often ‘bleed’ red sap (kino or Mayat) when damaged by insects or fire. Marri trees played a significant role in Noongar culture. The Kino (Mayat) had multiple medical and cultural purposes. These trees are also common nesting, feeding and hanging out trees for red-tail black cockatoos.
Chuditch: The Chuditch is the largest marsupial carnivore in western Australia, but have experienced a spectacular decline since colonisation. This is due to a number of factors, including poisoning from early settlers, habitat destruction, and of course predation from foxes and feral cats. The Chuditch population is now estimated to be less than 6,000.
- The Chuditch is an opportunistic hunter and carnivore, meaning it will feed on whatever it can catch. This is mostly small invertebrates from fallen and dry logs, small mammals and lizards. Chuditch are also known so supplement their diet with the fleshy coating of Zamia seeds.
Zamia: The Zamia is an ancient Cycad plant, a relic from Australia’s Gondwanan history. The plant is endemic to South-west Australia, and is identifiable by its crown of palm-like fronds, and the red fleshy seeds that form at the base. The seeds supplement the diet of many small mammals and birds, including the Chuditch! Please do not copy the behaviour of the animals, these nuts are poisonous to humans unless treated properly first!
Numbat: This unusual mammal is amongst Australia’s most vulnerable mammals. Adult numbats grow only to around 27 cm in length, including their brushy tail. They are Identifiable by a pointy nose, a reddish-brown coat and bold white traverse bands.
- The Numbats dramatic decline is the result of a familiar story; habitat destruction, and predation from wild foxes and feral cats. Numbats are specialised feeders, using their strong sense of smell and sticky tongue to sniff-out, and collect termites underground and on the surface of decaying logs and mounds.
Eucalyptus Wandoo: Also known just Wandoo or Dooto, this eucalypt is small to medium-sized and is endemic to southwest of western Australia. It has smooth bark, and forms lignotubers – a woody swelling at the base of the plant that is used for resource storage, and is particularly useful for regeneration post fire or disturbance. The Wandoo hold particular importance to the Numbat, who typically make their nests from fallen and rotting tree hollows of Wandoo trees.
Western Pygmy Possum: Also known as the mundarda, this is one of the smaller Australian mammals that is able to cope with predation pressure from foxes and feral cats, thanks to their quick reproductive cycle! The mundarda is soft grey to brown, with a reddish tinged back and a creamy white underside. Their tail is long and is almost hairless in the rear two-thirds.
- In the Avon region the animal is found in Mallee heath, preferring areas of Banksia and shrubby native myrtles. Their diet is opportunistic and varied, including invertebrates, small lizards and the nectar from native melaleucas and eucalypts.
Melaleuca Radula: Also known as the graceful honey-myrtle is another plant endemic to the south-west of Australia. It is a spreading shrub with narrow leaves and pink to purple flowers that bloom in late winter. Noongar people use a leaf stew for sore gums, upset stomachs and indigestion.
- This tree also makes up a significant food source for the Western pygmy possum, but only when the nectar becomes available during the late winter bloom.
Wedge-tailed eagle: Australia’s largest bird of prey, with a wingspan approaching 2.8m in the largest birds. Predominantly brown with a ruffled blonde patch across the back that becomes darker with age. Although they are now common across Australia, they were once threatened. Many think their resurgence is due to the large number of introduced prey now available – one upside to rabbit, fox and feral cat introduction.
- The wedge-tailed eagle or Warlitj holds particular significance to the Nhoongar people, the bird is woven into the dreamtime as the old guardian of the sky, protecting the earth and sun.
Karri: The Karri tree is vital to many Australian birds and mammals. It’s dominance in the canopy offers particular value to the wedge-tailed eagle who requires a high vantage point for hunting, and protection of the it’s clutch. Their nests will rest high in the tallest trees, often lodged between forks in branches. Their nests are made up of dry sticks, and a lining of green eucalypt leaves.
Western Brush Wallaby: The Western brush wallaby is pale grey with a distinct white facial stripe, and dark ears. The tail is black with a white tip, and its paws and hind feet are ‘gloved’ black. It prefers drier forest, and tend to shelter in thickets during the day and grazing on native grasses, shrubs and forbs in the afternoon, evening and early morning.
- The wallaby has suffered greatly across the avon region from land clearing for agriculture, and although the adults are large enough to avoid predation from foxes and feral cats, young wallabies are consistently preyed upon.
Nuytsia: Known as moodjar in noongar is a hemiparasitic tree found only in Western Australia. Thanks to its bright display of orange flowers during December time, it has also been known affectionately as Christmas tree. The plant synthesises food both by photosynthesis, and obtains some food, water and nutrients from its hosts through it’s root system. The leaves of the plant are consumed by the western brush wallaby, who are also known to suck nectar from the flowers.
Emu: Emu’s are a flightless bird, they lack a part of their breast bone where wing muscles would attach. Their wings are only 20cm long which is way out of proportion to the rest of their body. They are the second largest bird in the world, standing nearly 2m’s tall and weigh up to 55kg. They may be a bird that cannot fly BUT they are very fast! They can dash away at nearly 50km/hr. They are actually the only bird that has calf muscles and have favourable three forward facing toes. They love to swim as well so you might see them in the Avon River. To keep their large mass the omnivorous eater has to eat lots of nutritious plants, flowers, roots and all. They even eat some pebbles to help their gizzard break up all the food. Emu’s were once culled by farmers because they eat their crops but they are now thankfully protected.
Fringed Lilly: This perennial herb is endemic to Australia. It boasts a beautiful violet three petal fringed wildflower that grows 20-60cm tall. It has a crisp edible root. It is quite special seeing these beautiful flowers in the Avon region.
Echidna: These are one of two egg laying mammals left, they have descended from the platypus millions of years ago, but they have adapted to the life of the land. They now have very short and strong limbs and long claws which are great for digging and breaking up soft logs. Their diet predominately consists of ants, termites and worms. They have approximately 2,000 elctrosensors on their snout and poke their long sticky tongue into holes in search of a snack.
When under threat they curl up and protrude their spikey spines all over their body, looking like a Balga tree. The spines are often not enough to protect them from feral foxes, cats and domestic dogs. Their young spineless puggles are of particular risk.
Balga: Is a grass tree endemic to Australia and can grow up to 5m tall, which is impressive when they grow at a rate of about 2.5cm per year, yes that a 200-year-old grass tree! The black charcoal stem that protrudes from the ground can often take up to 20 years to start becoming prominent. These trees are stimulated by fire burning them and often post a fire they will flower. They are very special to Noongar people because they would use almost all of the tree as a part of their survival. Some of the uses include:
o The bases of leaves are sweet and nutty to eat, when you chop the tree top off you can eat the white pulp within the trunk. This pulp was used as a medicine for upset stomachs and food in times of shortage.
o Nectar was collected from spike flowers.
o At the base of the plant globules of a hard-waterproof resin was collected, which served as a cement to fasten barbs in spears or stone axes to handles.
o The tough leaves were used as knives to cut meat.
Wallaroo (Euro): They are not a kangaroo but they are a subspecies, they are bigger than a WALLaroo and smaller than a kangaROO. The males are often more than double the female size. They are stocky in build and are the masters of climbing up rocky slopes and less efficient at moving quickly across flat grassy plains. They tend to isolate and keep to a radius habitat of 2-3km. They are more nocturnal and often hide out in small caves and shelter behind large rocks. They are quite resourceful when it comes to sourcing water, digging to find sources rather than just relying on open water sources in times of scarcity. Lots of land clearing has threatened their habitat and an abundance of kangaroos has led to more competition for their food in times of drought.
Red Ink Sundew: Another recluse is the tuberous carnivorous species survives the summer by living underground and emerges in abundance once the first rains fall. It supplements its limited nutrient uptake by trapping anthropods (insects and spiders) by luring them in with its glistening drops of mucilage resembling fresh morning dew.
Pests & Weeds
Feral Cat: Cats were first introduced by European explorers in the 1800’s to hunt rodents in their sailing vessels. Feral cats have become perhaps the most problematic introduced species in Australia. They are thought to account for at least 20 mammal extinctions in Australia, and threaten the survival of more than 100 species including the numbat and bilby.
- Each night, it is estimated that around 20 million native animals are killed by feral cats. This includes not only strays, but domestic cats that are allowed to roam the streets in the evening. Simple measures (such as belling your cat, meaning they are not able to sneak up on prey) could reduce the negative impacts of feral cats, but the number of strays mean active measures must be taken.
Phytophthora: is a well-known fungal pathogen, causing dieback in many of south-west WA’s forest communities. Phytophthora is an introduced, and very easily spread root fungus, that causes disease and death for many native plants. The most difficult aspect of phytophthora and associated dieback is it is near impossible to spot during dry weather, but can damage ecosystems very quickly in wet weather. Once it is established it is near impossible to eradicate, so stringent restriction of spread is the best way to tackle phytophthora.
European Fox: The European fox, which was thought to introduced to large areas for sport hunting, is also an efficient hunter much like the feral cat. Native mammals have not evolved to avoid these hunters and thus make easy prey. Fox and dog baits are used extensively in national parks and other protected areas to try and reduce fox numbers and thus the strain on native prey.
Black Berry Bush: This plant originates from Europe and is one of the most invasive weeds in Australia. It is a thick bush and has thorns which make it hard to pass through. It is commonly found along water banks and borders of roads and properties. It makes it difficult for wildlife to pass through these areas. It is also houses pests such as foxes. It also dominates the landscape and threatens native fauna.
European Rabbit: The European rabbit is one the most destructive pest in the Avon Valley. Due to their voracious appetite, in high population density areas they can place pressure on smaller plants, and seedlings. This in turn affects the native animals that require small grasses, herbs and forbs as diet and cover from other predators, both native and invasive.
Bridal Creeper: Bridal creeper is a highly invasive weed native to Ethiopia and South Africa. It was introduced as a garden plant in the late 19th century and has invaded many different ecosystem types in the Avon Valley and WA more broadly. It’s seeds are spread by birds, meaning it has invaded even the most remote, untouched parcels of the Avon Valley. Biological control has been attempted but to little success.
Feral Pigs: These hogs came to the country with the first fleet. They are incredibly destructive. You may notice large areas of soil turned up, especially along river beds which increase erosion. They spread weeds and degrade soil and water. They hunt native species like small mammals, birds, reptiles and frogs. Additionally, they can carry diseases that affect other animal and plant species.
Arum Lily ‘Death Lily’: This plant may be visually impressive but they have been wreaking havoc on the bushlands in Western Australia for over 100 years. They poison animals and destroy resources and habitats for native species. You often see them in abundance suffocating wetlands.
Feral Goat: Cashmere and Angora Goats have been present since early 1800’s settlement to start a fibre industry, when the industry collapsed a lot were set free and abandoned. Some goats were taken in land by railway construction and mining gangs to use for their meat and milk. Like all introduced species they increase competition for native species and increase erosion.