Cooper Creek

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Don took a mangrove discovery tour in the Cape Tribulation area of the Daintree National Park. The Cape Tribulation Wilderness Cruise is the only tour boat permitted in this area, and provides exclusive access to 9 square kilometres of World Heritage Listed wilderness. The cruise starts from Cooper Creek’s Coral Sea mouth and heads towards the spectacular Thornton Peak, Queensland’s third highest mountain. Don and the team had the opportunity to see estuarine crocodiles, mangroves and bird life.

Ancient rainforest:

This magnificent area of rainforest is the largest in Australia and thankfully it has been saved from destruction. The area was simply too remote or too rugged to be fully destroyed. Don explained that often the timber getters got in and cut out the biggest of the trees. The biggest trees that have ever existed grew in Australia. Some of them were over 400′ tall, and all have been removed.

Mangroves:

Of Australia’s 36 mangrove species, 28 are found in the Daintree region. Although referred to as a group of plants, they aren’t all related to each other. Mangroves are plants that grow in a community in the zone of salt or brackish water between a creek or river and the forest beyond. Mangroves are salt-tolerant plants (known as halophytes). They have special adaptations called pneumatophores, which stick up out of the soil and supply roots in wet soil with oxygen. Mangroves play an important role as a marine nursery. The majority of fish are either born in the mangroves or they feed on things that are born in mangroves.

Estuarine crocodile (Crocodylus porosus)

The most aquatic of all crocodile species, the estuarine crocodile spends little time on land and swims great distances. This large and dangerous species has been known to attack man.

Saltwater crocodiles are distributed throughout the coastal regions of northern Australia, from Broome in WA to Rockhampton in Qld. They are found primarily along mangrove-lined tidal rivers (in brackish water) up to 200 km from the coast, and flood plain billabongs, creeks and freshwater swamps up to 100 km from the coast.

Contact information

Cape Tribulation Wilderness Cruise
Ernie Dillon
Cape Tribulation Road
Cape Tribulation
Phone/Fax: (07) 4098 9052
Email: info@capetribcruises.com
Web: www.capetribcruises.com

Costs:

Day cruises (1 hr) cost $20 for adults and $15 for children (4-14)
Night cruises (1.5 hr) cost $25 for adults and $15 for children (4-14)
Bookings are essential