Tracking Down Shearwater at Griffiths Island

Determined to stick to our plan to stay away from the beach, to avoid any of our extremities turning blue, we decided to visit Port Fairy. Port Fairy was just 20 minutes or so up the road and my wife thought my daughter would get really excited about visiting a place with “Fairy” in it’s name. She didn’t.

Port Fairy is one of the oldest seaports in the state. It had a pleasant main street and we had plenty options for hot food before we went in search of the sea. Having fed ourselves, we got back in the car and headed seawards, straight past the camels.

Camels??? I’ll look into it later!

Then we parked up along the road out of Port Fairy. It was rugged, unspoilt, harsh and beautiful. Just take a look yourself…

Port Fairy

Port Fairy

Port Fairy

Port Fairy

Port Fairy

Port Fairy

Port Fairy

Port Fairy

Further up the road, the houses on Ocean Drive overlook these views. Nice! Prices start at around £375,000. Detached of course.

We had heard you could get a boat to a place called Griffiths Island. We were thinking it was a bit too cold for a boat ride, the car is so much warmer. But we were only in the car for a short distance when we saw somewhere to park that looked “pretty”. Turned out it had a path onto Griffiths Island.

Griffiths Island was a real treat. It had an absolute calmness about it. Eerie but with total serenity. How does that work?

I had heard it has a colony of short-tailed shearwater numbering several tens of thousands. This all meant absolutely nothing to me. But I wanted to see them anyway, even though I didn’t know what I was looking for. Let the search begin…..

As we left the island, two joggers were running onto it. I hate jogging but I thought, if I had to, then this would be the place to do it.

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{ 6 comments… add one }
  • Kamma May 1, 2014, 6:05 pm |

    I love the idea of a place called Port Fairy!

    • BobinOz May 2, 2014, 8:24 pm |

      It gets even better, they have the Port Fairy Folk Festival each year as well, how good does that sound?

      • Kamma May 29, 2014, 6:12 am |

        Brilliant. I want to go live there right now.

        • BobinOz May 29, 2014, 7:26 pm |

          One of the calmest and most relaxing places I’ve ever been.

  • BobinOz September 16, 2009, 12:34 pm |

    Hi Ian

    Aah, that would explain it. They were all asleep. I wondered why it was so quiet when there are supposed to be thousands of them there.

    I did think I might have spotted one when I saw that (possible) Grey Heron but then that just goes to prove when and I said “even though I didn’t know what I was looking for”, I wasn’t joking.



  • Ian Traynor September 15, 2009, 6:52 pm |

    Hi Bob

    The lare bird looked like a Heron to me – possibly a Grey Heron, if you get them in Australia.

    Most, if not all, members of the shearwater family are nocturnal. By day they roost in burrows and then come out to feed at sea at night, returning around first light.

    Generally, the best time to see them is just after dusk or just before dawn.

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