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Monday, June 22, 2009

Shark Bay, Western Australia

Sunset at Denham

The little town of Denham on the Peron Penninsula is the most westerly town in Australia and sits on the shores of Shark Bay.

The Denham Seaside Tourist park has three levels of sites with water views. Watching the sun go down over the clear, azure water right at your campsite in the evening is absoslute bliss.

Denham front street

I found the Discovery Centre very interesting and spent quite some time there watching videos and learning about this special place.

Shark Bay covers 2.2 million hectares of the West Australian coast and is home to hundreds of animals and plants, some found nowhere else on earth.

The most important flowering plant in Shark Bay is seagrass and there are meadows and meadows of it - 400,000 hectares, more than anywhere else in the world. It's estimated that about 10,000 dugongs live and graze on this seagrass along with many other endangered species.

Eagle Bluff

Before Shark Bay could become Heritage Listed, it had to satisfy all four requirements which are:

. Natural Beauty

. Earth's History

. Ecological Processes

. Biological Diversity

Eagle Bluff

As of May 2008, Shark Bay became one of only 20 other places on earth to share this great honour. Some other World Heritage listings that meet the same criteria are The Great Barrier Reef, the Galapogos Islands and The Grand Canyon.

Fishing boats at Denham

Because Shark Bay ranks as one of the world's important wilderness area, the West Australian Governement has a huge responsibility to keep it in pristine condition.

Dozens of fish like this are caught here every day by recreational fishermen in boats

Officers from the Department of the Environment and Conservation and the Department of Fisheries are permanently based in the area.

Meadows and meadows of seagrass

It's a comforting thought to know that Shark Bay will now remain in its natural state, without interference, forever.