There are two entrances to the Yanggai Barring Reserve from Wonga Road. I was very pleased to read on the entrance sign that the reserve had wetlands, as my map didn't indicate that. That was a pleasant surprise, as I find wetland reserves more interesting as they give more opportunities for any keen photographers.
A slightly winding path descends slowly through a narrow bushy area and opens up to the pleasant surprise of a lake, large by suburban parks standard. The lake is in a natural gully, so the entrances are downhill. Another entrance from Landau Drive would offer more reasonable access for wheelchairs.
A short boardwalk led to an overwater viewing area with a bench seat. On the four corners of the viewing platform, the corner posts extended above the railings with a wooden carving of a bird on each one.
There were dozens of ducks swimming in the lake, many heading towards the viewing platform on my arrival, perhaps expecting a free feed. On a walk around the lake, many more ducks were sighted on the edge of the lake, silently slipping into the water on my approach. All the ducks were the very common black duck species which perhaps proves that birds of a feather stick together.
One lone dusky moorhen and a lone swamphen seemed at home among the many ducks. It was a joy to watch them as they made frequent dives, coming up with some vegetation from the lake bottom. The ducks would occasionally perform a duck dive in search of nourishment.
This would be an ideal reserve to bring children to watch the many ducks on the lake as they are never still, neither are the ducks. Count the ducks would be an amusing game for the children to play, exercising their numeracy and observation skills.
Like most suburban parks and reserves they are surrounded by housing. As in most cases, they are seen and not heard. Another common feature of parks in suburbia is many of the residences have a gate in their back fence, allowing the locals and visitors to enjoy this very quiet and pleasant experience.
There are numerous small parks and reserves in the Ringwood North, Warranwood and Croydon Hills area, so an afternoon visiting several would provide a range of different experiences. Children would enjoy it as many have playgrounds. Even your pet dog would enjoy the outing.