Wednesday, 18 April 2018

Wild Bird Wednesday 299 - Australian Wood Duck

Well, things are a bit hectic here - so today I am going to post some ducks and leave it at that!

These are Australian Wood Ducks (Chenonetta jubata) which are considered to be Goose-like Ducks!  I tend to think of them as duck like ducks!

Anyway, these ladies and gentlemen were about and about at Halls Gap last week, so I felt obliged to photograph them.






The males are the birds with the dark brown head, the female have the greater extent of speckles.

Sorry for the lack of visits - I'll be back up to speed for WBW 300!

As ever, to join in with WBW just click on the blue button below the thumbnails - feel free to share a link to this page on the many and varied forms of social media that we now use every day!  SM


Tuesday, 17 April 2018

The Things They Left Behind 6: Heatherlie Quarry (again)

I've been away again - but this time, just to add to excitement, Sal was in New York with her choir - so I was in charge (well sort of!).  Hence I have not been doing much blogging - hope to catch up soon!

These are some images from Heatherlie Quarry, which is an abandoned quarry in the Grampians National Park about fours hours from Melbourne.  I had been wanted to try some black and white shots of the absconded machinery there, and these are the results.  The buildings have been renovated in recent years - but not much!







More pictures from around the world at Our World Tuesday.  SM

Wednesday, 11 April 2018

Wild Bird Wednesday 298 - Eurasian Coot

The Eurasian Coot (Fulica atra) is not the most colourful bird you will ever see, but I still rather like them.

I used to watch them as a kid while I was fishing - and they may have been in the first 10 birds I ever learnt how to identify.  They also occur naturally in Australia, which makes a change for birds from my childhood!

These pictures were taken when I was down at Point Lonsdale last weekend.




As ever, to join in with WBW just click on the blue button below the thumbnails - feel free to share a link to this page on the many and varied forms of social media that we now use every day!  SM



Tuesday, 10 April 2018

Faces from the wood

When we were in our accommodation in Tasmania I found these faces in the wooden panels on the front of the bedroom cupboards.

What do you see?



More pictures from around the world at Our World Tuesday.  SM

Wednesday, 4 April 2018

Wild Bird Wednesday 297 - Noisy Miner

The Noisy Miner (Manorina melanocephala) is a well named bird.  It travels in family groups which are very noisy.  They are also somewhat aggressive, to people and (possibly more importantly) other birds.

There used to be a pair of these birds in the car park of the local pool, and they would swoop very closely past my head, with a percussive snap of the beak and an annoyed call.  Once I cam to expect this, it was not much of a problem.

However, for other birds its a bit more of a problem.  Noisy Miners are much better able to cope with fragmented and damaged habitats than many other Australian birds, and this is where their aggressive nature becomes a problem.  In some places they can form breeding colonies that basically drive out most of the other breeding birds.  High numbers of this species are really a mark of a damaged ecosystem.

The first set of pictures - with the bird on the ground - were taken at the car park, while the last two were taken at a local cafe, where the birds were cleaning up some spilt sugar.  They are nothing if not adaptable!










As ever, to join in with WBW just click on the blue button below the thumbnails - feel free to share a link to this page on the many and varied forms of social media that we now use every day!  SM


Tuesday, 3 April 2018

Which Way?

Thanks for the Easter Long weekend I was able to take a day trip down to Point Lonsdale and Queenscliff this weekend.  A rather splendid lunch and a bit of bird watching resulted.

When we pulled into the car park at Queenscliff I saw these Silver Gulls standing on this sign near the beach.  I rather liked the scene.

 


More pictures from around the world at Our World Tuesday.  SM

Wednesday, 28 March 2018

Wild Bird Wednesday 296 - Spotted Turtle-Dove / Spotted Dove

The Spotted Turtle-Dove or Spotted Dove (Spilopelia chinensis) is an introduced species in Australia,  and according to the most recent guide it is confined to 'alienated habitats' - which is a phrase I have not heard before.

They are common in Melbourne, but seem to be more noticeable in my area in autumn when all the leaves - or most accurately acorns - have fallen from the oaks we have as street trees.  I spent sone time this weekend looking for these birds feeding in the fallen leaves, but they seemed to prefer driveways and pavements.

You can also see in these pictures, that once a dove has found an acorn it may not always be the easiest thing for them to swallow!







As ever, to join in with WBW just click on the blue button below the thumbnails - feel free to share a link to this page on the many and varied forms of social media that we now use every day!  SM


Tuesday, 27 March 2018

Clean Air

Tasmania is justifiably famous for its clean air - there is not really very much going on to its south and west, and that's where its air comes from.  So, with clean air and (normally) abundant rain fall, moss and lichen cover many of the plants.

These pictures were all taken near the entrance to Cradle Mountain National Park.







I am also getting a bit of clean air myself, in terms of it not being so crazy busy. So, with luck I will have visited your blogs by the time this post goes live. 

More pictures from around the world at Our World Tuesday.  SM

Wednesday, 21 March 2018

Wild Bird Wednesday 295 - Paperbark Flycatcher

Just keeping my head above water here! Just.

This is a Paperbark Flycatcher (Myiagra nana).  This bird replaces the Restless Flycatcher in tropical Australia.  I took these images at the Mamukala Bird Hide, Kakadu National Park in the Northern Territory.

I have a lot of images of this bird that are not sharp due to its near constant movement - some much for it not being restless!



As ever, to join in with WBW just click on the blue button below the thumbnails - feel free to share a link to this page on the many and varied forms of social media that we now use every day!

I think I can see a chink in the armour of my generally hectic schedule - I hope so.  SM




Monday, 19 March 2018

Still Crazy!

I once read a description of Australia as being "Mother Natures greatest experiment in alternative realities".  I am in no position to argue with such wisdom!

I offer this sign as evidence that there may be alternatives yet to be explored!


I'm still extremely busy - but hope to find some space to visit blogs soon!

More pictures from around the world at Our World Tuesday.  SM

Wednesday, 14 March 2018

Wild Bird Wednesday 294 - Lemon-Bellied Flycatcher / Lemon-Bellied Flyrobin

I only have time for a brief post this week - too much life happening!

This bird is a Microeca flavigaster (I hope!).  I have gone with the scientific name first this week as this bird seems to have at least three common names, the most common of which are Lemon-Bellied Flycatcher and Lemon-Bellied Flyrobin.  The most recent Australian bird guid suggest that this bird poses a number of identification problems due to the number of sub-species.

I believe that trying to work out the sub-species of this individual may be a road that leads to madness.  I will not travel that road!

The two pictures were taken outside the Mamukala Bird Hide, in the Kakadu National Park, in the Northern Territory.



With luck I will have time for a rather more expansive post next week!

As ever, to join in with WBW just click on the blue button below the thumbnails - feel free to share a link to this page on the many and varied forms of social media that we now use every day!

Tuesday, 13 March 2018

A fine walk

Back to Tasmania for this week's post.

Cradle Mountain National Park offers a wonderful range of day (and longer) walks.

This walk actually follows the start of the Overland Track, passes Crater Lake (where we stopped for lunch) and up to Marions Lookout - where you get stunning views of Cradle Mountain.  A climb up (and down) from Marions Lookout is short but steep.  I can't help but wonder how it will feel with a full pack later in the year.

Once we had reached Marions Lookout it was all down hill (more or less) with views of Dove Lake and Lake Lilla.  A brief stop at Wombat Pool for a drink was the last halt of the day before we returned to the car park at Dove Lake.

We saw great views, a very large snake at close quarters and not that many people.  That's a recipe for a good day in my opinion!

Lunch at Crater Lake
Crater Lake
Crater Lake
Cradle Mountain from Marions Lookout
Towards Dove Lake
Walking Down
View to Wombat Pool
Wombat Pool
More pictures from around the world at Our World Tuesday.  SM