Nature, Flora & Fauna

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Home to some of the finest beaches and bays in the world, visiting Rottnest Island will be an unforgettable holiday experience.

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With a choice of over 63 secluded beaches and 20 bays, you will be spoilt for choice.

Dinner at City of York Wreck

Rottnest offers a smorgasbord of coastal activities including boating, fishing, swimming, surfing, diving and snorkeling.

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Snorkel with 135 species of tropical fish as compared to eleven species recorded off the metropolitan coastline. The tropical current often brings visitors to our waters such as the Green turtle.

Pelicans

See pelicans and stingrays cruising the shallows of Thomson Bay.

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While walking past the new West End Boardwalk (made possible by a $200,000 donation from the Rottnest Foundation), keep an eye out for burrows in the sand. These are actually the nests of Wedge-tailed shearwaters commonly known as ‘muttonbirds’ and can be up to two meters deep.

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Admire the fields of Rottnest Island Daisy flowering near Green Island during spring. Also known as the blue lace flower, this native is actually a member of the carrot family and has become a very popular ornamental garden plant.

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Spot a pod of Bottlenose dolphins feeding & surfing in Salmon Bay (north).

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See osprey nests known to be over 70 years old at West End and Fish Hook Bay. Osprey’s mate for life and return to their nests, adding more to the stacks every year. This majestic raptor has a 1.5 meter wing span.

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Look out for Banded Stilts, Crested Terns and Red-capped Plovers on the Lake Herschel and Lake Baghdad. Crested Terns have a shaggy black cap of feathers on their head which people say looks like Elvis Presley on a bad hair day.

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Listen out for the White-striped Freetail bat flying over the Settlement at night – recently discovered as the second mammal species living on the Island.

Quokka & Baby

Observe the Island’s famous marsupial,the Quokka. During the autumn and winter months (March to August) young joeys may be seen peaking from their mothers’ pouch and come spring (September to November), bravely hopping around exploring their new world.

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Hear the distinctive nightly calls of our 3 species of frogs – the moaning frog (Burrowing frog), the motorbike frog (Western Green Tree frog) and squelching frog (Sandplain froglet). The Tree frog is quite restricted in its distribution, whilst the moaning frog and the froglet are usually associated with low-lying areas, freshwater swamps and seeps.

Bobtail Lizard (Tiliqua rugosa konowi)

Keep an eye out for geckos at night around your unit (Marbled gecko and Spiny Tailed gecko).

Whale & Lighthouse

Around 35,000 migrating Humpback and Southern Right whales linger in the calm waters around the Island. In April each year they head north to feeding grounds while on their return trip during September to December, the whales and their newborn calf’s spend much of their time playing in the protected Rottnest waters gaining strength and learning all the things a young whale needs to know before returning to the colder southern waters. You can often see them from the Island itself.

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Observe the delightful antics of the New Zealand fur seal colony out at Cathedral Rocks. Currently being implemented as part of the Wadjemup Walk Trail project is the development of a Seal Viewing Platform at Cathedral Rocks, co-founded by the Australian Government through the T-Qual Grants programme.

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Grab hiking boots and a water bottle and venture out along the newly opened sections of the new Wadjemup Walk Trail. The Bickley Bay Walk Trail and The Lakes Walk are now open! The Rottnest Foundation are currently seeking funding to implement further sections of the Wadjemup Walk Trail.