Saturday, August 4, 2012

Magnetic Termite Mounds, Litchfield National Park

After a very pleasant two days at Adelaide River we packed up yet again and continued north to Litchfield National Park.  We had been told by a number of campers that camping sites were at a premium at Wangi Falls and that we would need to arrive early to secure a site.  So we set off by 9 a.m. and we only had about 120 kms to travel.

Once we entered the national park we made an initial stop at the magnetic termite mounds.  Connor has asked me why they are called “magnetic” and unfortunately I have found nothing to give me this information.  When we next have access to the internet I will need to try and check that out.

There were two types of termite mounds.  Some were the ones we are now very familiar with – large with moulded shapes and varying sizes.  These were very large and called “cathedral mounds”.    This large mound is over five metres high and is thought to be around fifty years old.

The second group of mounds we hadn’t seen previously.  They were scattered over a large area and from a distance looked like tomb stones.  They were very different from the cathedral mounds in that they were very thin but still quite tall and they had flat surfaces and no rounded moulds. 

Termite mounds are made from a mixture of grasses, dirt/sand and termite droppings.  They are certainly amazing to see, especially in mass.  It appears that the mounds are not damaged by the rain during the wet season.

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