Cape Campbell - Wildlife
As well as wild views the Cape Campbell Walkway guide book promised us lots of wildlife, from sea life lounging on the beaches to birds being buffeted in the fresh air. We'd also be sharing the track with many regulation farm animals - and rabbits. Aargh!
Sheep and Cabbage Tree
The route traverses two large working farms on the coast, and walkers wander through flocks of woolly-headed Corriedale sheep and herds of nosy Angus cattle. There are no scary bulls, thankfully!
Walkers who are also gardeners will definitely want to scoop up the chocolate meringue cow-pats and take them home. Everywhere underfoot there's great garden manure - and cow manure is the very best of all.
The walking guide lists a lot of birds who live here - Harrier Hawks, Pipits, Bellbirds, Riflemen to name but a few. The most obvious birds we saw were pairs of Canada geese, who honked furiously as we came into view. And when we reached the coast Sally's famous seagulls were conspicuous by their absence...
OK You Seagulls - Show Yourselves!
Sadly we lost count of the many large hares on the hills. They are most unwelcome, devastating the land and causing serious problems with erosion.
At one farm entrance a gang of hens and roosters did use their bird brains. From our trio of walkers they managed to pick out the gourmet cook and followed only her, keen to be fed. Eggs from the gang were available in the pantries in the overnight accommodation - thanks, chooks!
Seals are permanent residents on the beaches, and we walked quietly (and carefully) past one. At low tide the mudstone beach by the lighthouse had rock pools which filled up with seaweed and assorted sea treasure. On went the beach shoes, and much fossicking ensued.
We didn't try any fishing, but we did find a baby octopus stuck in the sea lettuce. Our cook, being a vegetarian, released the squirmer into the water.
It immediately changed into a grey-brown rock-colour (fair enough if you've spent ages unsuccessfully trying to look like green sea lettuce) and swam away.