Manuel, Maria, Carmo and Emma Morales are the owners of Caloma, a property located in Durran Durra, approximately 17km northeast of Braidwood, New South Wales. The property is a dedicated wildlife sanctuary and recreational site, and the owners are currently regenerating as much native vegetation as possible. The Morales family have plans to build a small house on the property and install several water tanks for general use as well as fire protection.
The property covers approximately 50 hectares across a former pine plantation. Since purchasing the block in 2004, the owners have worked to restore the land to its natural state, planting native species and installing three dams as habitat for wildlife. Native vegetation is largely comprised of eucalypt woodland, with riparian habitat around the property’s two creeks.
Since logging the plantation in 2010, some native vegetation has naturally restored, along with invasive plants such as blackberries. The owners have also planted snow gums (Eucalyptus pauciflora), bottlebrushes (Callistemon spp.), native pines, grevilleas, banksias, waratahs (Telopea speciosissima) and various locally native shrubs.
Wildlife now present on the property includes bare-nosed wombats (Vombatus ursinus), short-beaked echidnas (Tachyglossus aculeatus), eastern grey kangaroos (Macropus giganteus), freshwater turtles, lace monitors (Varanus varius), snakes, water dragons (Intellagama lesueurii), blue-tongued lizards (Tiliqua scincoides), small freshwater fish, eels, yabbies and a variety of native frogs. Feral species such as European rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus), deer and pigs (Sus scrofa) are also present.
A wide array of birdlife is also found on the property including glossy black cockatoos (Calyptorhynchus lathami), magpies (Cracticus tibicen), wedge-tailed eagles (Aquila audax), kites, native owls and wild ducks.