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Monday, May 24, 2010

Explore a World of Biodiversity These School Holidays


Watch the whales migrate north for winter, join an Aboriginal Ranger for some local bushtucker or step back in time and into the shoes of a convict, all in NSW National Parks.

As part of the International Year of Biodiversity, NSW National Parks is holding fun and educational Discovery activities these July school holidays. Happening in parks across the State and hosted by local rangers, the program of activities and events are sure to keep the kids active and entertained.

The onset of winter marks the arrival of whales on their annual migration north and there is no shortage of fantastic spots in NSW’s National Parks to view these spectacular creatures. A range of Discovery activities and events are being held throughout the whale watching season at top whale-spotting locations including Muttonbird Island at Coffs Harbour, Kamay Botany Bay National Park at Kurnell in Sydney, Wyrrabalong National Park on the Central Coast and Port Stephens–Great Lakes Marine Park. Join NSW National Park Rangers and Marine Park staff to learn about these giant creatures and their fascinating habits.

Enjoy a morning stroll along the banks of Bongil Creek with an Aboriginal Discovery Ranger in Bongil Bongil National Park and learn about the traditional use and value of the environment for food, hardware and medicine on the Bongil Bongil Bushtucker & Medicine Walk (July 5, 12 & 19).

Take the kids on a step back in time to the year 1820, where they’ll become convicts Bound for Botany at Kamay Botany Bay National Park (July 8 & 15). Watch the friendly rangers lead the group through role plays, games and a wild convict “escape.” The kids will learn about the early settlers’ lack of bush survival skills in vast contrast to those of Sydney’s Aboriginal people, with every little convict taking home a National Parks Certificate for the day.

Join a Discovery Ranger at Great Lakes Marine Park, Port Stephens for Jr Ranger Dangerous Marine Creatures Rockpool Ramble (July 9). Here the kids will learn all about some of the dangerous animals living under the sea, their adaptations for survival and how they can harm humans – in plenty of time before they hit the water next summer.

Whether your brood is interested in lighthouses, frogs, sunsets or koalas, NSW National Parks are offering day and night Discovery activities around the State, with something for everyone.

For more information on these and the wide range of winter school holiday Discovery activities on offer in NSW National Parks, visit www.wildwildworld.com.au. Bookings are essential for all Discovery activities and some may attract minimal fees.

What does biodiversity mean to you? Visit www.wildwildworld.com.au, click on the competitions link before June 25 and tell National Parks what you think it means to win a $100 voucher for Discovery activities around the State.

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