tell me about your critters

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tell me about your critters

Postby stepka » Mon Mar 06, 2006 3:33 pm

Hi all, new here. My family and I will be visiting, starting next November for about 3 months, and will be doing a lot of camping. We keep watching these wildlife shows about the most poisonous spider in the world (from Australia) and the most poisonous snake in the world (toss up between Au and Africa?). So I want to hear from you all--what should we be on the look out for? And what do you do if you do get bitten? (The girls will be 12 and 14 by then, so old enough to learn what to do.)

In America we have plenty of mosquitos, ticks and poison ivy, so we're pretty familiar with those, but the spiders and snakes worry us a bit. Should we carry anything special in our first aid kit? Also, what is the peskiest thing you have to deal with? And how bad are the mosquitoes? They're fierce where I live, but it's swampy around here.

Well that's my biggest concern. We're very excited to be coming to your great country.
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Postby Scolers » Mon Mar 06, 2006 6:29 pm

Hi Stepka,

You are right in that we have quite a few creepy crawlies here but honestly you'd have to be pretty unlucky to get bitten.

I've just finsihed vaccuming my house and sucked up a few red back spiders ... so bascially we live with them I guess and learnt to stay away from them and give them space.

If you are camping when you come here in Aussie just pop into a camping store and ask for some help re. creepy crawlies. If what they say alarms you it's likely they want you to buy the most expensive potion or gimick to keep the bugs away. Crocs? Well that's another story ... ;)

Cheers ...

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Postby Ozzycamperboy » Mon Mar 06, 2006 7:29 pm

The biggest factor in most of the questions you asked will be where exactly you are going. The further north you go, the more nasties you get in general (but the nicer the country gets to make up for it :wink: ) I've been an avid camper for atleast 5 years (not much but i'm only 20), and the nastiest thing i've seen was a King Brown Snake in my backyard, not even when camping. Also had a red belly black snake in our laundry :shock: . In each case they were more scared of us than we where of them. But all snakes should be left alone, and can get very nasty if their threatened/cornered.

Spiders arent that bad, just dont stick your fingers where they dont belong, if you want to lift a piece of bark or sumthing to see whats under it, us a stick. Simple common sense usually works a treat. Contrary to popular belief, funnel webs dont jump, and can't climb... so dont sleep on the ground without a tent, and make sure u zip it up.

If bitten by a snake, your supposed to wrap the limb up above the bite tightly to slow the blood flow, and therefore slow the spread of the venom. But it would be best to find out from someone who knows what they're doing exactly, maybe do a basic 1st aid course before you come, I think treating snake wounds is pretty generic regardless of the snake, just with some you have to act quicker.

Mozzies are reall bad in summer, and all year round in the northern states. Flies are just as bad if not worse, personally, i'd be more scared of stuff in the ocean than on land (blue ring octopus, box jellyfish), but again, theres not really many reports of people dying from poisonus critters. Never been there, but I hear crocs are scary up north. And dingos in some places, but they're usually ok as they're scragly little things, but could easily take a child (always watch ur kids when ur in teh bush)

Dropbears are probly the most ferocious critter you'll find in the bush, try not to camp under gum trees, and spray the perimiter of the site with a good dropbear repellant (just ask for it at the camping store :wink: )

Oh, and if your swimming/snorkelling, and you see a sting ray/sand ray, dont go near it, and especially dont step on it like I once did (they dont like it :wink: ) - their tail has a poisonus barb and hurts like hell :evil:
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Postby stepka » Tue Mar 07, 2006 2:26 pm

Dropbears are probly the most ferocious critter you'll find in the bush, try not to camp under gum trees, and spray the perimiter of the site with a good dropbear repellant
Hmm, now they never mentioned those on the nature shows. 8)

It sounds like we'll need to take the same precautions there, that we would here for spiders and snakes. Ours just aren't quite so deadly, but hey, we DO have grizzly bears--just not around this part of the country. Those are murderous if you run into one.

But thanks guys--we'll be talking to a ranger I guess. We're really not scaredy cats--just careful with our kids and unfamiliar with the wildlife there. We're hoping to see a kangaroo. (not a wasaroo!) Well I'll have lot's more questions in the next few months.
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Postby Scolers » Tue Mar 07, 2006 6:08 pm

Dropbears are really bad over here in Perth :shock:

:P

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Postby Ozzycamperboy » Tue Mar 07, 2006 11:15 pm

Some critters I have encountered, and been able to take pics of :mrgreen:

Image - was in a lump of firewood in my backyard

Image - pet sulphur crested dingaling

Image - Flies can get pretty bad

Image - but when your here you wont care about flies/snakes/spiders :mrgreen: - this is only 3hrs drive from sydney
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Postby Ozzycamperboy » Tue Mar 07, 2006 11:26 pm

And just to clear any confusion:

Image
Image

But you may see similar to this :mrgreen:

Image
Image
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Postby Scolers » Wed Mar 08, 2006 10:36 am

Funny guy ... :P

When I lived in Darwin (early 80's) we used to have to catch buffalo meadnring on the main road ... doesn't happen anymore tho' but the crocs in Darwin harbour are becoming prolific.

Now where did that shot go of the croc I caught?

:shock:

Cheers ...

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Postby stepka » Wed Mar 08, 2006 2:34 pm

So, like, where can I get some of that dropbear repellent?

That sounds like an old joke they did here in the states where they'd take someone out for a "snipe" hunt. I don't remember now how it went, since I never was taken for that ride.

Ozzie-- my girls loved the pictures-esp the baby kangaroo. Now we really want to come.
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Postby Scolers » Wed Mar 08, 2006 4:10 pm

Stepka,

Can't keep doing it to you ... a 'dropbear' is something that drops from a tree (or elsewhere) onto your tent ... so it 'could' be a tree branch etc. It is a joke that has doen the 'rounds here.

Welcome to the 'dropbear' club ... :D

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Postby stepka » Thu Mar 16, 2006 1:23 am

Welcome to the 'dropbear' club ...
Thanks Scholers, I feel like a true initiate now. Let's see, is a dropbear one of those evil creatures that you can get to come down if you lie on the ground and spit up into the tree? Then if it spits back you know there's a dropbear up there? (I love the internet!)

We're hoping to make it out to Western Oz when we get there, but that is a long drive from Sydney, so we'll see. We'll have 2-3 months, and I've read many good things about Perth and WA.
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Postby Scolers » Thu Mar 16, 2006 12:57 pm

I lived in Sydney for 14 yrs ... now that I'm out I'll never go back. I do go back occassionaly to visit family but everytime I do I need counselling due to the mobs of people but more worryingly the traffic! Scares me senseless!

Be warned about the drive ... it's long ... VERY long ... and there isn't much to see but if that's how you want to do then go for it. To give you an idea ... if you were to drive non-stop from Perth to Sydney (and sleep inbetween) it would take you four days. And even that's pushing it a bit.

People don't realise just how big Australia is ... even tho' it is a touch smaller than the US we have VERY LITTLE inbetween on the trip from East to West.

Hope this givs you an idea of what you are in for.

Cheers ...

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Postby Cheiffy » Thu Mar 16, 2006 7:58 pm

Hi Stepka,

When the time comes closer, let us all know what it is you would like to see and maybe we can drop some ideas your way. Scolers is right when he tells you about the distances between towns.
I hope you have a bonza time when you get here, it would be a shame to come all this way for a Barry Crocker.

Cheers

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Postby Scolers » Thu Mar 16, 2006 9:23 pm

I hope you have a bonza time when you get here, it would be a shame to come all this way for a Barry Crocker.


:lol: :lol: :lol:

Ditto to Cheiffy ... it seems that the ppl doing the chatting are from different States so you should get some reasonable knowledge from us all ... well ... maybe the odd Aussie joke here and there ... but that's knowledgle too!

;)

Cheers ...

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Postby Ozzycamperboy » Thu Mar 16, 2006 10:32 pm

I rekon you could pretty much skip sydney, thats comming from a local :roll: . Of course you'd have to do all the usuall touristy sites, so, tour of the CBD, 2 days MAX. The only thing I can reccomend is a decent harbour cruise at night, its awesome. Then maybe another day seeing stuff like the koala park, or featherdale wildlife park, but if your going to QLD aswell I think they have better parks. But on the way, Australian Reptile park is well worth a day - its about 1hr north of sydney.

Blue Mountains/Lithgow might be worth a look for yous', depends realy what you want to do and what sort of travel you like. As chiefy mentioned, post up more details closer to the date and you'll get heaps of help and advice.
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