Alex on Camel, Egypt
Butchers in Moshi, Tanzania
Remarkable Rocks, Kangaroo Island
Summer Palace, China
Dorota on Brighton Beach

Hamelin Pool, Stromatolites

Hamelin Pool, Stromatolites - feature photo

Hamelin Pool Marine Nature Reserve is one of only two places in the world with stromatolites, the others are at Glacier National Park in Montana USA. I think these ones near Shark Bay are the most interesting as NASA were there just before us undertaking a field trip to examine the stromatolites. They were discovered in 1956 and are the earliest record of life on earth.

Hamelin Pool, Shark Bay is one of the most ancient vistas on our planet it is known as the Pilbara region of Australia. Our earliest ancestors still survive here etched into the rocks around 3.5 billion years old as stromatolites.

The reason they are able to survive here is the water is actually twice as salty as normal sea water which makes it inhospitable to many other living things.

The stromatolites are so important that it made Shark Bay a World Heritage area.
The stromatolites are too small to be seen, but appear as rocky lumps scattered over the beach, they are actually built by tiny organisms using sediment and other organic matter. Within these rocks there is a massive community of them which are thought to have 3,000 million m²! They can build stromatolites up to 10 million times their own size (1.5m, but 10 million sounds better). A 1m stromatolites is about 2000 years old.

They are very boring to look at, and just look like dark rocks around the beach, but its amazing to think how old these things are and what they must have seen in their lifetimes! There are walkways which you can walk along to stop any damage to them, but unfortunately there always seems to be someone who has to think otherwise.

Whilst you’re here you should also visit Hamelin Pool telegraph station where you will get a private tour of the museum. Its very interesting, especially to hear about all the damage which was done to the lines by the aboriginals to make tools for hunting.

Shell Beach is just off the Hamelin Road at Hamelin Pools, its about an hours drive from Denham. Shell beach is made from billions of tiny shells and is one of only two in the world. It is about 65 miles long and around 10m deep.

A large number of buildings around this area were built using bricks cut out from the beach. This is a photo of a typical quarry which had been excavated.

Well this may have not been the most interesting part of my travelling nor maybe the most interesting thing to read on my travel blog… but it was nice to finally meet my oldest ancestors 😉

Stromatolites, Hamelin Pool – Travel Photos