Hi. The island that I was staying on is called Hayman Island in Australia . I am going to tell you a little information about Hayman Island. Hayman Island is part of the Whitsunday Island Chain. There are 75 islands in the chain. I will be talking about flora and fauna. Flora and fauna refer to plant and wildlife. I will also be talking about the Great Barrier Reef. The Great Barrier Reef is the biggest reef in the world.
It was so humid in Hayman Island there I could not believe it. It was also really hot and felt even more hot because of the humidity. Even though it was really, really hot it was a hotel with a huge pool (picture of pool at the top). That helped us keep cool.
First I am going to talk about plants. Another way to say plants is flora. The plants at this island were huge! You could build a house out of them! The leaves of some of the plants were as tall as my dad and he is really tall. If a plane crashed on this island the weird thing is that you would be able to eat most of the plants (I am pretending that the hotel is not there). You would be able to eat most except the bright colorful plants. Please look under my Hayman album for some pictures of the plants. The Grass Tree can get up to two meters tall. It is a tree with a large round trunk, and it has long linear leaves. The trunk usually is black because of fires. It has spikes that stick up all together, off of the spikes there are flowers that grow in the summer and attract very large insects and small birds. I picked the Grass Tree because it interested me. The spike in the middle looks like a tall stick. During my interview with the landscape manager he told me the Aboriginals used to use it as a spear because its nice and sharp. It was brown and it looked like it could kill someone really easily. Please look under Hayman Island pictures and there will be a picture there of a Grass Tree.
Now I am going to talk about animals. Another way to say animals is fauna. One of the kinds of animals that we saw in Hayman was a bat. Not just any bat but a Flying Fox is what they are called. The Flying Fox is a type of fruit bat. On Hayman island there were about 700 Flying Foxes. I went on a hike to see them and saw them. All 700 of them were hanging up side down fanning themselves. They looked like a bunch of Chihuahua's. They sounded like them too. They also look like small bats. There are 3 different species. The Greyheaded, Black and Little Red. The one that was on the Island was Little Red. Unlike other bats Flying Foxes us eye sight to see were they are going. You would think that they are not busy during the day but they are. During the day they fan themselves and they take care of their young. They only eat at night though. At night the Flying Foxes fly all the way around the Island eating food from native trees. Look for a Science Explorers On Location Video coming soon showing more about Flying Foxes.
Another animal that is very popular on Hayman is the Green Tree Snake. The landscaping manager told me this story. He explained that once someone left their door open the whole day and then when they came back and got in the shower she found one in her bathroom. She called Doug to get it, but she would not move or put a towel on so he had to go in to the bathroom with his eyes closed and try to find this snake. Anyway the snake got out and he got out with out seeing anything. If you touch The Green Tree Snake it will make itself larger, and it will stretch out so that you can see the blue in between its scales. They eat small reptiles and frogs sometimes even fish.
Last but not least I am going to talk about the Great Barrier Reef. The Great Barrier Reef is under the category of animals but some people would think its a plant. It is not. "Corals looks like plants, and they don't move around like a lot of animals, but they are animals. What we see as branches actually are whole colonies of coral animals. (found at http://www.discoverymagazine.com/digger/d98dd/d9806dd.html)" Thats why. While I was in Hayman my family and I took a sea plane to the outer reef. The sea plane felt so much better on my ears then a normal plane (my ears hurt sometimes when I take a normal plane). When we got to the reef we went snorkeling and saw so many different coral. We also saw so many HUGE clams. The clams there were giant. I could fit in to it! After 1 hour of snorkeling we were ready to leave but we were sad because we did not see a turtle. All of the sudden a turtle shows up right when we were about to leave.
The Great Barrier Reef is called "great" because it is the largest reef in the world. Please look under pictures and there will be some pictures of fish and the Great Barrier Reef. The area of the Great Barrier Reef is 344,400 km2. That's big! The Great Barrier Reef grows in Australia because of the warmth that is in the water, the clearness that is in the water, and because the sun can reach it. The companies that take people out to the Great Barrier Reef are super careful that no-one touches the coral. I think it is fantastic because then the Great Reef will last even longer.
I loved it at Hayman in the Whitsunday Islands and was sad to leave. I am writing to you from a different place and this place is also in Australia. I will tell you were I am in the next blog. I will talk to you soon. Thank you and don't forget to comment. : )
Enjoy this video I made on some of the animals!
Coral Is An Animal. N.p., n.d. Web. 6. 5 Jan. 2013. .
What Flora and Fauna Means. N.p., n.d. Web. 6 Jan. 2013.
Van Wyk Smith, Douglas. Person to person interview. 4 January 2013.
Hayman Island Grounds Maintenance & Landscape/Environment Department General Overview. Hayman Island Pamphlet. ND.
Green Tree Snake. N.p.. n.d. Web. 8 Jan. 2013.
The Flying Foxes. N.p.. n.d. Web. 8 Jan. 2013.
Grass Trees. N.p.. n.d. Web. 10 Jan. 2013.
All photos and video were taken by me and my family.