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By lobster - 25 November 2008 32

I have a friend from America coming to visit me just after Christmas.

One of the things she said that she wanted to do was to see a platypus in the wild.


So, does anyone know of any places around the ACT area where the platypi hang out?

Are they even in the area?

Any other information regarding the platypodes?

Thank you


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32 Responses to
la mente torbida 11:41 am 25 Nov 08

Agree with AG Canberra…around Weston Park you are probably seeing water rats. I live a couple of hundred meters away and they regularly visit.

northside 10:20 am 25 Nov 08

I’ve seen some recently at Tidbinbilla too, mid-morning in the wetland area; it’s neat to see them in the wild, but she’ll get a better look at the whole creature at an aquarium.

AG Canberra 9:40 am 25 Nov 08

gargamel – I’m sure what you would have seen would have been water rats. There are hundreds (if not thousands) of them around our fine lakes…

darkmilk 9:34 am 25 Nov 08

Here’s a short page on Platypus watching, by an American now living in Australia As it says and others have suggested, she has seen them at Tidbinbilla.

dexi 9:21 am 25 Nov 08

Kambah pools. At the far end of the main pool on the opposite bank. Near the big wombat hole. If you go early in the morning, walk across the rocks and wait on the edge under one of the trees, you will see a platypus swimming along the bank. Be still, quite and patient. You may only see him swim by once if at all.

At night you will see wombats.

pptvb 9:16 am 25 Nov 08

Believe it or not….Just below lower Molonglo Sewage Works.
The treated water is THAT clean !
Also seen them in the Brindies.

Thumper 9:14 am 25 Nov 08

I’ve seen water rats in the lakes. They’re pretty cool 😉

gargamel 9:11 am 25 Nov 08

Believe it or not, I’ve seen quite a few around Weston Park on the lake.

That’s right – you don’t even have to leave the city to see them.

There is a particular place not far from the West Park train back toward Black Mountain where I’ve seen several over the years.

neanderthalsis 9:10 am 25 Nov 08

Out at Tidbinbilla, there is a designated platypus walk that takes you up to a small dam that has a few of the little critters in it. Best go at late afternoon or dusk. Even better, check with the rangers to see if they are doing guided walks. Mrs Neanderthalsis and I did one some months ago, didn’t get a close view as they are rather timid, but we could see them frolicking in the distance.

AstarothReborn 9:10 am 25 Nov 08

Tidbinbilla Reserve is the best bet for wild platypus in the region – there’s normally a ranger guided thing every Saturday where you can be taken to one of the dams where some platypus live. It starts 5:30pm for November: meet the ranger at the Brush-tailed Rock-wallaby car park which is approximately 10 minutes drive from the Visitor Centre and entrance to the Reserve.

It’s not 100%, but it’s probably about the best chance you’ll have to see one in the wild.

For other platypus viewing – the Sydney Aquarium has a far better platypus enclosure than Taronga. And Healesville down near Melbourne is best of all.

justbands 9:09 am 25 Nov 08

I have seen them a few times up high in the ‘Bidgee (below Tantangerra), although as mentioned….they are VERY shy critters & quite difficult to spot. I’ve been camping & fishing maybe 150 times in that area & have seen them only three or four times. They are indeed amazing, but your friends odds of seeing one in the wild would be quite slim.

astrojax 9:08 am 25 Nov 08

head down towards cooma and find relatively unpeopled stretches of the murrimbidgee and hope! i have seen one or three along thsoe stretches, some years back now, and aren’t at all sure in the current climate/flows there are any about, but that’s a spot i know them to have been at some time…

otherwise, similar advice for the old dirt road from goulburn to oberon, but not the murrumbidgee, obviously!

good luck – but tell your friend, the best bit about it won’t be [not] seeing them in the wild, but being in the wild!

seekay 8:51 am 25 Nov 08

Googong Dam – but good luck! They are more than shy. They are like Greta Garbo when it comes to their privacy.

Thumper 8:37 am 25 Nov 08

The little beasties are very difficult to find in the wild. I saw one at Araluen about 30 years ago, another in Molonglo, also many, many years ago, and again at Cradle mountain in Tassie a few years ago.

The zoo is the best bet as you can also see other wonderous little beasties like Quolls, Numbats, Bilbies, Bandicoots, etc.

Speaking of which there are heaps of cute little bandicoots at Potato point.

And you can always show them roos as they seem to be everywhere in Canberra at the moment 😉

johnboy 8:28 am 25 Nov 08

Taronga zoo is your best bet IMHO.

But a day spent on the side of the mountain creeks is rarely wasted (just often platypus free, they’re shy beasties).

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