If you are a Chiropterologist or one who is interested in studying Flying Foxes in large colonies, then a visit to the Redcliffe Botanical Gardens is for you. A sign at the front gate reminds us all that some Flying Foxes carry disease and can be fatal to humans if bitten. If you do see an injured Flying Fox on the ground the warning is clearly on the sign – do not touch it but ring RSPCA or the Queensland Government Wildlife Hotline. Their vocal 'chirps' on the day I visited, could be heard quite profoundly across the park.
Large Flying Fox colony in Redclife Botanical Gardens (Author's Photo)
Apart from the hundreds of Flying Foxes living in the gardens, this land was once a cow paddock which the Council transformed into a botanical garden housing a wide variety of Australian Native plants. The garden includes an herb garden, which is maintained by the Peninsula Herb Group and has over 500 species of culinary and medicinal herbs. Plaques are positioned throughout the garden for visitors to read about the species of plants growing within those areas.
Peninsula Herb Garden, Redcliffe Botanical Gardens (Author's Photo)
A rainforest is also incorporated into the gardens occupying approximately one quarter of the Botanical Gardens. There is over 250 rainforest native plants from the Moreton Bay region including Monkey's Ear Rings and Black Bean. A water feature and natural pond has been developed from a spring that has formed under the rocks in the rainforest area. Barbecues and picnic tables are available for use throughout the park.
Picnic tables provided amongst the gardens (Author's photo)
I was very impressed with the cleanliness of the toilets in the park. The gardens is located in Henzell Street and is open seven days a week from 6.00 am to 6.00pm.
Settlement Cove Lagoon
Situated on the beach side of Redcliffe Parade is Settlement Cove, a man made lagoon complete with lifesavers patrolling in the summer months. There is also a small wading pool for toddlers, a children's playground, bikeways, barbecues, picnic tables, showers and toilets. Large rocks are packed into the shoreline and make easy seats while soaking up the sunshine and watching birds and fish frolic in the ocean.
Man made lagoon at Settlement Cove (Author's Photo)
The lagoon has two accesses, one a flight of several steps and the other a ramp which is of a good width for wheelchairs and the elderly with walkers. The lagoon and park area is free although there are rules for bicycles, skateboards, rollerblades and roller stakes to be restricted to the bikeways only. No dogs are to be taken into the lagoon area, yet they may be walked through the bikeways on a leash. The lagoon is also an alcohol and smoke free zone.
Walkway, wide enough for wheelchairs (Author's Photo)
It was so peaceful with the sea breeze, clear blue sky and water that glistening from the sun that I sat there for quite some time feeling very relaxed and wishing I had brought my swimmers with me to take a dip. I did however, have a paddle along the lagoon edge to cool my feet.
It's really calming watching the ocean (Author's photo)
I came across Corscadden Park quite by accident, yet stopped to walk through and see what the park had to offer. Situated in Hutchinson Street, it has off-street parking, concreted walkways/bike paths, a concrete waterway and plenty of grassed area to kick a football. A great park for a leisurely walk or a place to sit on one of the park benches to read a book.
Humpybong is certainly a name you would not forget in a hurry and one you would want to learn more about. In 1823 under the instruction of the Governor of Brisbane, it was decided to look for land north of Brisbane to erect a convict outpost. Twenty-nine convicts arrived in the September of 1823 along with officials, soldiers, their wives and children. Temporary huts were built and gardens were planted with vegetables. However due to several misfortunes including Aboriginal attacks, hordes of mosquitoes and the death of Felix O'Neill in March 1825, it was decided to relocate the settlement back to the banks of the Brisbane River. A few buildings were left standing and the local Aborigines referred to them as "oompie bong" which meant 'dead house". The name stuck and was Anglicised to Humpybong.
The park has lots of beautiful aspects (Author's Photo)
Humpybong Creek was originally the main water source for the convict settlement and was flooded the City of Redcliffe in times of severe rainfalls because the outlet of the creek was very narrow. In 1950 the council approached Dr Gordon McKay of the civil engineering department of the University of Queensland who was an expert in creating physical scale models to solve engineering problems. Dr McKay built a model with streamlined walls on both the inlet and outlet structures. When tested the model had much better results than expected. The culvert or type of weir was built in 1960 and a carpark was built over the top.
Humpybong Park has a large skate area which was well patronised by onlookers as well as participants. Thrill seekers and confident skaters have the use of skate bowls, grinders, stunt ramps, wedge ramps, stairs, quarter pipe and flat skating areas. There really is an art to this sport and provides lots of fun for the onlooker as each skater defines gravity.
One of the water features in the park (Author's Photo)
After you have had enough entertainment from the skaters, a walk through the park is just as enjoyable with small waterfalls, bridges and bird life. The ducks are very friendly, perhaps they thought I had some food for them to eat as I'm sure by their attitude they are quite used to being fed.
It was really peaceful finding a place to sit in the park and watch the world go by. You never know just what gems you will find when you go for a drive heading nowhere in particular.