The resurgence of plant live creates underwater gardens as the flood waters spread.

    Photo Credit: Tom Rayner

    Sunset paints the marshes in golden hues.

    Photo Credit: Tom Rayner

    A turtle peeks above the water line, probably in search of a tasty treat.

    Photo Credit: Tom Rayner

    Crop lines scar the dry plains of the marshes.

    Photo Credit: Tom Rayner

    With water comes life – both above and below the surface.

    Photo Credit: Tom Rayner

    A kangaroo bounds through water as the marshes once again begin to flood

    Photo Credit: Tom Rayner

    An aerial view of the marshes during drought.

    Photo Credit: Tom Rayner

    A black winged stilt (Himantopus himantopus) wades through flood waters.

    Photo Credit: Tom Rayner

    Receding waters often leave victims, unable to escape the falling water level.

    Photo Credit: Tom Rayner

    Shallow water courses through the grass plains, weaving between barren trees.

    Photo Credit: Tom Rayner

    As the water rises it submerges the surrounding plant life – creating underwater gardens teeming with life.

    Photo Credit: Tom Rayner

    With the return of water, predators like this fox also return in search of an easy meal bought in by the floodwaters.

    Photo Credit: Tom Rayner

    Dry periods bring predators of another kind.

    Photo Credit: Tom Rayner

    Water flows into the marshes, creating green islands of flourishing plants.

    Photo Credit: Tom Rayner

Gallery: documenting the recovery of an iconic wetland

By AG STAFF | January 30, 2015

These images are part of a larger project documenting the transition of the Macquarie Marshes Nature Reserve from a parched desert, at the height of the millennium drought, to a soaked oasis. The photos reveal a revival of the local flora and fauna – flooded forests, colonies of breeding waterbirds, turtles, snakes and, of course, fish.