Trails and Tails
The highly anticipated 70km of new trails at Blythedale Coastal Estate are increasingly being utilised by both nature-lovers and fitness junkies. BCE’s Holla Trails are used for a plethora of exciting activities, including mountain biking, trail running, and nature walks.
While on these nature walks, a sharp eye can spot many different species of flora and fauna. There are 320 hectares of indigenous coastal forest to explore. In a recent escapade along the river, hikers admired the mangrove estuary, all the while doing as much to scuttle around freshwater crabs as the other way around. “They’re more scared of you than you are of them” is not true for everyone, as attested to by several stricken city-slickers.
One sighting that was appreciated by most of the group was that of a palm-nut vulture – this rare, interesting bird can sometimes be seen in and around the Estate, which is home to a nesting couple. Their nest is made from sticks and branches, and located in the fork of a tree at BCE. Also known as a vulturine fish eagle, this bird has an extremely unusual diet for a bird of prey. 90% of its diet consists of the husks of the Oil and Raphia Palm fruits. The rest of their diet consists of other plant matter, as well as amphibians, crabs, fish, and molluscs. The aforementioned vulture was also seen flying above the Blythedale Coastal Adventure Market last month.
A pleasant walk led to many more sightings, and it’s a foregone conclusion that more than a few of the hikers will return in the months to come. In the meantime, keep your ears to the ground and your eye in the sky, especially when immersing yourself in the natural wonder that is Blythedale Coastal Estate.