Looking horror-movie fierce, the thorny devil is just one of the amazing inhabitants you’ll find in the Gawler Ranges of South Australia. The only species of the genus Moloch, this colorful character can survive up to 20 years, but only grows to about eight inches. He dresses in camouflaging shades of browns and tans that match his desert environment; and they change from pale colors in warm weather and to darker shades in cold. The fascinating little dragon also has a spiny “false head” on the back of its neck that it presents to potential predators by dipping its real head forward. Those scary spikes cover the entire upper side of the body to protect against predators.
This little devil joins variety of other spectacular lizard species as well as koalas, kangaroos, emus, seals, dolphins, a host of endemic birds and so much more on the Eyre Peninsula, home to the Gawler Ranges. If you like all creatures great and small, this wilderness region might be just the ticket. A diverse terrain changes from semi-desert to arid to eucalypt woodland, while the age old volcanic landscape is spectacular with its gorges and weathered rocky outcrops. In the midst of this landscape is Gawler Ranges Wilderness Safaris’ camp provides a unique adventure in the Outback. From a colony of wild koalas to spectacular Lake Gairdner, a large salt lake that, when in flood, is considered the third largest salt lake in Australia, to a day swimming with sea lions at Baird Bay, Gawler Ranges offers you a glamping experience with luxury safari tents set in the stunning wilderness.
To encounter the thorny devil and his companions, grab a pack and explore our new President’s Pick: Adventure Australia!