For the third post of our Easter 2016 Cruise series, we share with you some wild seascapes and endearing wildlife on Deal Island.
When we emerge after a peaceful night at anchor, Bennett Wallabies and Cape Barren Geese are on the beach at Garden Cove, our first sight in the morning light. The geese patrol their territory and pursue invaders, including us. They honk loudly even charging towards us, neck outstretched, as soon as our back is turned, but when we face them they run away in a flap. They are quite comical, odd looking birds. In contrast, the Bennett Wallabies look very gentle. Some quietly graze, others sit on their backside with their tail forward, looking like little oldies in their comfy armchair. Then it is time for bird watching of the much smaller and fleeting kind. The Beautiful Firetail, Silvereye, Grey Fantail, Richard’s Pipit, Flame Robin, Willy Wagtail, Blue Wren… are some of our finds.
Walks around the island are one of the delights of being on Deal. As well as enjoying the wildlife, we explore right around Garden Cove on the first day, then take a wander around the cottages and up Barn Hill on the second day. We give the lighthouse a miss, having been there a few times. It is now closed for safety reasons, due to its state of disrepair – a shame for such a significant site, but we don’t miss the steep climb! The walk up Barn Hill is rewarding enough for us. The scenery is magnificent and the shoreline spectacular with its rugged cliffs and jagged rocky outcrops.
We have been to Deal Island many times and it is our friend Sue’s second visit. Her first coincided with our first ever post on this website, “The Real Deal” in June 2014. We never tire of this beautiful, remote part of Tasmania and one of the most iconic Bass Strait islands to sail to.