Heirisson Island is an absolute gem in Perth and seems remarkably under-appreciated. It’s right on the doorstep of the main part of the city, in the middle of the Swan River, at the end of Riverside Drive. There’s a busy road (The Causeway), which connects the North and South of the city, and it crosses the island. If you head south on The Causeway, you can pull into a car park on the island. Once there, it feels a million miles from city centre life.
I called in this week for an hour for a walk in the middle of an otherwise busy day and there was plenty to see. This pelican was having a mid-day rest and didn’t seem interested in my presence.
The island has its own population of kangaroos. You have to go through a gate on the western side of the island, where there’s a fence to stop them wandering onto the road. In the daytime in summer, they’re usually sleeping in the shade, but this week was cooler so they were out grazing.
This shows an island within a lake on the island in the river – strange. Note how there’s nobody else in the picture at all! Despite being in a city. Why?
Because it’s so close to the sea, the tide still effects this part of the river. This means that the water is brackish and there are natural tubes for the river water to flow in and out of the lakes on the island. So that explains how jellyfish have come to populate the water on the island.
This time there were lots of herons around. I saw at least 7 in the wetland area. Much more shy than the pelican or the darter, but they still let me get close enough to get some photos.
There are usually darters somewhere to be seen on the island, and often they will be stretching their wings out to dry like the one below.
There are development plans around for the island. One plan is to make a sculpture park. However, I quite like it as it is – quiet, peaceful and natural.