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Sculpture Walk

Dotted throughout the marina precinct, is an expanding collection of carefully selected vibrant outdoor sculptures by celebrated Australian artists. From eclectic to traditional these pieces will catch your eye and start some interesting conversations.

Bubble & Squeak

This beautiful piece took approximately 250 hours to complete. This sculpture weighs 60kg and has 240 metres of chain with 12,000 links.

Both chain sculptures were designed and made by Queensland artist Mike Van Dam, who constructed the sculptures from 4mm marine grade stainless steel chain in easy handling lengths of 1.5m. The links are then welded together to form an extremely tough and sturdy pieces of art.

Missing link...

This sculpture weighing 240kg, is made up of 950 metres of chain with 47,500 links and was completed in approximately 450hrs.

The Voyeur

This statue standing 182cm high in bronze, was commissioned for the marina with Sydney artist Louis Pratt in 2014 using 3D technology.

 

The Brolgas

 Made of Australian Bronze, The Brolgas were created by Will Wilson of Willie Wildlife Sculptures.

The graceful and elegant dancing displays of the Brolgas are much admired and have become legendary. Aboriginal legends explain the dance of the Brolga as that of a young maiden who was turned into a graceful bird because of her constant dancing. 

Brolgas are thought to mate for life, and pair bonds are strengthened during elaborate courtship displays which involves much dancing, leaping and wing-flapping. During courtship the brolgas make a call like a loud trumpeting ‘kaweee-kreee-kurr-kurr-kurr-kurr-kurr-kurr’ or ‘garooo’. Brolgas usually lay two eggs a year and both male and female build and tend their nest. 

Sea Born

Did you know?

  • The Humpback Whale has no teeth instead they have baleen plates that act like a giant sieve!
  • The Humpback Whale has two blow holes, one for each lung. Each of its lungs is the size of a small car. Wow, that’s a lot of air!
  • A baby whale is called a calf. They are nearly one tonne when they are born and suckle up to 600 litres of milk a day from their mums!
  • A pod of whales is defined as more than one and normally averages between two and six whales.
  • A tail slap is when the whale slaps its tail with full force into the ocean. The action of their tail slapping the water makes an intense sound.
  • Jumping high out of the water and slapping as they come back down is called breaching. This behaviour may be done to loosen skin parasites, or just for fun.
  • When a whale pokes its head out of the water and takes a look around this is called spy-hopping. Usually lasts for about 30 seconds.
  • No one is certain how long humpbacks live, but it's thought to be between 30 and 40 years with some elders living 70 years or more.
  • When whales migrate they leave their main food source (krill) and have to survive off their fat stores (blubber) for up to six months! 
  • These gorgeous guys can hold their breath under water for over half an hour. 
  • Humans help identify different whales by their tails; each one has different characteristics, just like our fingerprints!

 

Sailfish

It is very difficult to measure how fast a particular fish can swim; we can only rely on rough estimates, however the sailfish is undoubtedly fast! Individuals have been clocked at speeds up to110 km/h which is one of the highest speeds reliably reported in any water organism. Due to their ability for incredible jumps and great speed they are highly prized game fish. 

Sailfish can appear in a startling array of colours, from subdued browns and greys to vibrant purples and silver. The sailfish can rapidly turn its body light blue with yellowish stripes when excited, confusing its prey and making capture easier. 
Their sail is normally kept folded down and to the side when swimming, but it may be raised when the sailfish feels threatened making the fish appear much larger than it actually is. 

Divers have observed groups of sailfish working cooperatively using their fins and sails to herd prey into a tight ball. Then at full speed and with fins folded back, the sailfish take turns striking the prey with their bills, circling back to feed on the injured fish.

 

Surfing the Break

Bottle nose dolphins, as the name suggests, have short stubby beaks. Their sleek, conical body varies in colour from a light to slate grey on the upper body to a pale pinkish grey on the bottom part. Bottlenose dolphins measure around 2-4 metres long and weigh 135-650kg. 

Dolphins can swim up to 35 km/h and dive as deep as 915 metres. Despite the fact that they live underwater and can hold their breath for up to 7 minutes, dolphins must come to the surface to breathe air. A muscular flap covers their blowhole while underwater and opens to exhale once they reach the surface. Dolphins aren’t involuntary breathers like humans. They must consciously swim to the surface to take a breath. This means they can never fully sleep.

Bottlenose dolphins communicate with each other using a collection of chirps, whistles, and clicks. Each dolphin has a signature whistle used to identify itself. When lost or isolated, a dolphin uses the signature whistle to call out to the group.

Within their groups, bottlenose dolphins like to play. They surf on waves near shore and ride waves caused by boats and big whales. They have also been documented creating bubble rings with their blowholes, spinning them with their beaks, and then breaking them apart by biting them. The technique of creating bubble rings is a learned behaviour; dolphins watch others create them and then try to mimic the behaviour.

 

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Testimonial

On behalf of the Soldiers Point Rural Fire Brigade, I would like to thank you for your kind donation of a berth for our Fire Boat.

As a relatively new addition to our brigade, the boat represents a significant investment by Lower Hunter RFS and as such we take our marine responsibilities seriously. Of course, a boat is only as good as its access to the Port Stephens waterways and by allowing us to berth the fire boat at your marina, we are in a fine position to be deployed at short notice.

Once again, I thank you for your generous contribution to the Rural Fire Service and in particular, to our brigade.

Neville Klein, Captain Soldiers Point Rural Fire Brigade