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J.W. Manson Native Reserve

Home > Melbourne > Nature | Walks
by Neil Follett (subscribe)
I'm a retired photographer living in Lilydale mainly researching and writing on Australian aviation history. Now writing more on general subjects.
Published October 7th 2019
Plenty of wattlebirds here
The J.W. Manson Reserve is a large area with three playing fields and a large expanse of bushland paralleling the south side of the Dandenong Creek. The main entrance is from the end of Selkirk Avenue, where there is a small car park.

Reserve entrance
The entrance at Selkirk Avenue.

A wide gum tree lined asphalt path takes you to the bush and the Dandenong Creek Trail. There is a rough narrow path winding through the middle of the bush enabling you to get close up and personal with the flora, which is mainly trees and shrubs.

Bush pathway
The central narrow path.

You can also wander around the edge of the playing fields for another view of the bush as it follows the creek trail for a few hundred metres.

One of many interesting trees in the reserve.

Bird life was very evident with the almost constant chatter of many wattle birds flitting from tree to tree, sometimes stopping within camera range.

Wattle bird
Singing for its supper?

Wattle bird
Wattle bird sitting quietly.

Wattle bird
Another one.

Two duck heads were spied emerging from the grassy verge of the creek, before flying three metres into the creek.

black ducks
Two black ducks in the grass.

Wood ducks.
Two wood ducks swimming.

A lone cormorant was sitting on a creek side tree branch, occasionally spreading its wings to dry. According to a local couple on an afternoon stroll, many other birds can be observed at different times.

Cormorant sitting.

An illustrated sign tells us that at dusk sugar gliders can be seen gliding from tree to tree. That would be worth looking for as being in suburbia there would no chance of getting lost in the bush at night.

sign in the bush
Reminding us where we are.

Even though it was spring, very few wildflowers were evident except for a white flowering bush that was very prominent throughout the area.

white wildflowers
White wild flowers.

white wildflowers
White flowers stand out against dark backgrounds.

There was much evidence of past wattle blooms as the early harbinger of spring begin to fade, the few that were still flowering added a bright spot in their bush setting.

A welcome splash of yellow.

As with most reserves bordering on suburbia, there were several examples of garden flowers taking hold in the bush, particularly along waterways. I spotted several nasturtiums and the ever present angled onion flowers. It was disappointing to see several blackberry bushes along the bank of the creek.

Nasturtium, colourful but not welcome here.

There is a sealed path on both sides of the Dandenong Creek Trail and both were popular with both cyclists and walkers, even though it was a weekday afternoon.

Underneath the arches.

The creek path borders the bush for about 500 metres which makes it a very easy walk.

Another colourful display.

Wheelchairs would have a pleasant journey by keeping on the paved areas along the creek trail, with the added bonus of seeing bushland and a running creek.

The creek bubbles along.

If you are traversing the Dandenong Creek Trail a stop here would be a welcome break.
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Where: Selkirk Avenue, Wantirna.
Your Comment
Photos are lovely,do lots of walks, with my toy poodle love nature.
by Judit (score: 1|10) 304 days ago
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