Monday, October 26, 2009

Eden and Twofold Bay.

Tucked into a sheltered inlet in Twofold Bay, across from Red Point and Ben Boyd’s Folly, is the quiet fishing port of Eden. Even at the height of tourist season this place stays calm and relatively quiet. At six hours drive from Melbourne, and six and a half from Sydney it is seen as “a little too far” even for Aussies.
The town sits in the hills immediately around the port.
There is a small fishing fleet that still operates from here.
This piccie represents for me how hard these fisher folk must work.
Looking across the bay in a landwards direction it is easy to see how undeveloped this chunk of country is. Largely because the Great Dividing Range extends almost down to the coast here.
As in many places in Oz there is wildlife in abundance.
Beautiful like Banksias
Cute and beautiful like a Rainbow Lorikeet.
Cute, tiny and too quick to get a decent photo. (A Superb Blue Fairy Wren). And oddly beautiful, but definitely not cute.
Eden wasn’t always so quiet from the 1840s until 1930 there were shore based whaling stations here. Whalers set out in longboats from the shore to hunt whales using hand harpoons.

One station, the Davidson’s, was operated by the same family for four generations (from 1843 – 1929).
One of the Davidson’s old cottages still stands.
This is the Davidson’s front yard (my youngest sitting at the bottom being contemplative)
While nestled in the corner of this idyllic inlet
are the remains of the station including: “trying” vat for boiling down the blubber and the capstan that was used to haul the whales up onto the beach.
The whalers, in particular the Davidson family, received significant support from an unlikely source. Perhaps uniquely, several pods of Orcas assisted in the whaling operations. The killer whales assisted in a number of ways: alerting the whalers that baleen whales were nearby by breaching and tail slapping; driving the baleen whales into Twofold Bay and into range of the harpooners; and harrying the larger animals as the whalers killed them.
In payment for their services the Orcas were allowed to take the lips and tongue of the baleen whales after they were dispatched.

There is one tale “Old Tom”, a male killer whale, becoming quite irate when one of the Davidson’s managers tried to renege on the deal.

If anyone is interested there are a number of websites that feature information on Eden’s orcas.

6 comments:

Amanda said...

Oh great post! I love the birds. The many colored one is so beautiful! Thanks!

Christy Pinheiro, EA ABA said...

These are some of the best natural photographs I've seen anywhere. The fishing boat photographs remind me so much of the Azores.

Diane said...

All of your photos are amazing. I love the blue fairy wren :0

Lisa said...

What a fascinating place!

image_of_purity said...

hello friend...i been a long time im not visiting here...you got a lovely picture..i love the view..

Al said...

Hi Amanda
Thank you. We are truly blessed by having so many parrots in Oz and the Rainbow Lorikeets are some of the most gorgeous. Best of all they are common and widespread!

Hi Christy,
Thank you I really appreciate the support, and thanks for the plug on your blog. I've never been to the Azores, they must be great.

Hi Diane,
Thank you. I love Fairy Wrens too, there are a number of species but the Superb Blues are just breath taking. They never sit still, and they are usually hiding in the undergrowth so they are hard to photograph.

Hi Lisa,
It is endlessly fascinating and so peaceful. I can imagine retiring there some day!

Hi Image,
Thank you. Good to see you back mate.