Australian Search Party - A Record Of Discovery, Geography, And Adventure By Charles Henry Eden

 -   We found a broad expanse studded with
dense mangrove flats, and it was with difficulty we ascertained which was
the - Page 90
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We Found A Broad Expanse Studded With Dense Mangrove Flats, And It Was With Difficulty We Ascertained Which Was The Main Channel.

We pulled on until about noon, by which time the mud swamps had disappeared, and we were fairly in the river, which much resembled the Herbert, of which I have already given a description, except that it was smaller, and that the vegetation was more luxurious.

On landing, we lit a fire, and cooked our dinner, consisting of ducks and moor-fowl that we had shot on our way up. I never remember seeing water-fowl in such profusion as here. The ducks and geese were literally in tens of thousands, and the beautifully-plumaged moor-fowl quite blackened the mangrove bushes as we passed.

The scenery was perfectly lovely. Tall palms shot up in every direction; wild bananas spread forth their broad leaves, amidst which were seen the bunches of fruit; and the larger trees - fig, Leichhardt plum, etc. - threw their branches across the river, and there interlacing, formed a leafy canopy such as we imagined was unknown in Australia. Some of the young palms we cut down for the sake of the head, which is very pleasant eating. Stripping off the leaves, you come to a shoot twenty inches or two feet in length, the interior of which consists of a white substance resembling an office ruler in thickness, and which tastes something like a chestnut, but is much more milky and sweet. The fruit of the wild banana has a most delicious flavour, but is so full of small seeds that it is impossible to swallow it.

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