Shifting Seasons Winter Safari

May 10, 2022

The Top End is coming into a new cycle in the nature calendar. Bamurru Plains on the Mary River floodplains is moving from Yekke, Wurrkeng into Kurrung, as it’s known to the local Aboriginal Jawoyn people. June through to August sees these coastal floodplains, savannah woodlands and mangrove riverine seem to settle into rhythm of abundance and perfect weather.

During the dry season (May – September) the weather in the Top End is idyllic– 27-32 degrees celsius, with very little or no rain. The build up or troppo season (October) and build down (April) are characterised by high humidity and low rainfall. Once the wet season begins in the Top End (November – March), it’s more difficult to get to places. The monsoonal rains make rivers impassable and some areas inaccessible by road. The wild electric storms turn the sky into a spectacular light show and the rain dramatically transforms the landscape.

  • Yekke (pronounced Yeg-gay) is late April to early June. Relatively cool, low humidity. Wetlands and billabongs carpeted with water lilies. Drying winds and flowering Woolybutt (Eucalyptus miniata).
  • Wurrkeng (pronounced Woor-e-geng) is early June to mid August or as the locals call it ‘cold weather’ time. Humidity low. Day temperature around 30˚C and night around 17˚.
  • Kurrung (pronounced Goo-roong) is mid August to early October. Hot and dry. Still ‘goose time’.

Bamurru’s expert guides will place you in the stead for seeing native wildlife such as red- tailed black cockatoos, buffalo, magpie geese, rainbow bee eaters, black necked stork, Australian bustard, red winged parrot and more. This is the time of rebirth on the floodplain as the black-necked storks have their chicks which are soon indistinguishable from their parents. The hatched magpie geese can be seen running across the floodplain as they learn to fly and a blanket of white forms as Australian pelicans and Little corellas arrive in their hundreds. From the comfort of your Safari Bungalow, designed to keep guests connected to the sights and sound s of the surrounding bush, wake up to the call of magpie geese and watch a parade of wildlife emerge into the day.

It’s the time of year for the bell-shaped flowers on the red kurrajong and pretty pink turkey bush. Pandanus begins to produce large seed pods which turn bright orange as they ripen and are a favourite food of the sulphur-crested cockatoo. Stringybarks are flowering and twisting spiral pandanus are ever-present around the safari lodge. You can spot wildlife from the edge of the infinity pool, sit back and enjoy the soft Wild Bush Luxury touches. With just ten safari suites blending seamlessly into the surrounding bush, you’ll forget there is an outside world. Mesmerising coral bat wing flowers with a vibrant scarlet, orange and red pea-like flower and out on the floodplain, there are carpets of yellow lilies on the fringes as waters recede.

August is the breeding time for many mammals and hundreds of water buffaloes visit Bamurru Plains every day, making well-trodden paths through the floodplain to their favourite feeding spots (often right in front of the pool) and mud baths. You won’t want to miss their daily procession back into the woodland for a safe nights sleep.
 
For a sample of Top End winter activities, visit. Or for further information, visit.
 

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