The Bay next to the Jetty at Russell Island to the left, is called Ooncooncoon Bay which means The Bay of Swans.
Before the Ferries took over the waters, the bay between Russell island and Cleveland was ‘black with swans’. Once the ferries and water traffic took over the waters, the black swans have stopped coming to the islands.
I saw a few swans swimming in the Bay, far away, but I did not see them again. They used to migrate to the vacant land off Bay road and they were numerous a few years ago, but now the migrations have lessened or even ceased. The swan Photos I have were taken off Mark Road ….a few years ago.
The mud attracts many birds. Herons, ibis and curlews are seen walking along the mud at Low tide, searching for fish and crabs. Oyster Catchers are often seen here. This area was an Oyster Farm in the days before the water was contaminated by ferries and also run off from the homes on the shores.
Ducks and pelicans are seen swimming in the waters seeking the sea life living in the Mangrove roots and mud. The Bush curlew and Bee Eater were seen here in the mangroves. The heron is often on the shoreline as the tide is receding.
Ooncooncoon Bay is rich in sealife…turtles, dugong, fish, mud crabs, and mantra rays. In the months when prawns are sround, you will see groups of small boats all armed with throw nets catching beautiful prawns from these waters.