A carnivorous loathsome beast hides in the rainforest in the Otway Ranges. It uses stealth and cunning to find its prey then devours them slowly. That’s what convinced Fifty Toes that they had to track one down and capture it. Using local knowledge we found out what areas it could be found. Driving out of Apollo Bay we found Koalas first at Kennet River. A quick stop for a photograph was required for our top 25 list (more on that later)
After the brief distraction we headed for Maits Rest rainforest walk. We walked as silently as a troop of baboons through the forest, looking everywhere, and just as the kids interest started waning, Oscar let out a cry “I’ve found one!”. Well not quite, but a very small part of one.
We chose a dirt track to take us to another likely site and 20km later we set out on the walk to Beauchamp falls
Within minutes our enthusiasm was raised as we started finding evidence of Victaphanta compacta. We laid a bounty down of 2 sweets for the first person to find a live one, and just as we arrived at the falls the cry went up – Amanda found it and with Oscar’s help he emerged with the famous Otway Black Snail in his hands, a species of carnivorous land snail that eats meat. Maybe not such a fearsome beast but a very unusual critter nonetheless. Mission accomplished!