Cee’s Black and White Photo Challenge: Letters E or F

My entries for this weeks Photo Challenge

blog_black and white_elephant

I am sure there will be photos of Elephants in this photo challenge. Here is mine, found in a secondhand shop.

blog_black and white_flying

Flying and almost flying

blog_black and white_face washing

Face washing. Don’t you hate when your Mum just has to wash your face!

blog_black and white_flower

Flower. The Moon Flower blooms at night so it was special to be there when the flower came out

Here is some of my elephant collection https://bushboy.blog/2015/02/21/elephants/

Februarys Finds

FEBRUARY has been quite busy. A new thing for me this month has been submitting some photos in photo challenges, which I have found to be quite interesting. The photo challenges make me think about my photography and that my photos elicit comments from other bloggers and in turn, I comment on their photos or the words used to enhance the photos in their blogs. So if you would like to see what I have submitted, have a look at my last few blogs in February. Maybe you would like to comment too.

In this blog I would like to take you on an adventure with me.

Lets set off, do you have a cuppa or something to sustain you while we explore my world?

I like to find something unusual to capture. The frangipannis shadow on the fence post caught my besties eye so this photo is inspired by her. I also took the photo in black and white but it didn’t have the same effect as a splash of colour in the background.

shadow-post_binna-burrra_named_feb-2017

We like to get away in February for a couple of days (we call our mini-holiday) to Ballina Beach Resort. Among the gardens there is always a Water Dragon or two sunning themselves. Looking down from the balcony you get a different perspective of the Water Dragon.

water-dragon_rocks_named_ballina_feb-2017

But he is always watchful and spied me looking over the edge.

water-dragon_head_named_ballina_feb-2017

Back at my besties famous bird bath, where many a bird photo has been taken, the Striated Thornbill liked to show off his little reddish leg, almost taking a bow.

striated-thornbill_named_binna-burra_feb-2017

Now we are going for a bit of a walk around my place. For once I just took my camera to get some of the stuff around here. Most walks get disturbed by the habit of pulling out weeds as I walk around. This time I concentrated on getting some of the life around here. OK, I may have pulled a few weeds here and there!

One of the weird and wonderful are the air ferns. They look rather alien at times don’t you think? This one is growing on a fence post.

air-fern_named_home_feb-2017

As I walked around, every now and then, I smelt the heady scent of honeycomb. The Bloodwoods are in flower. I love the creamy colour of the flowers and green of the leaves against the blue sky.

bloodwood-blossoms_named_home_feb-2017

OK back to ground level. The native flowers that abound the bush come in a number of colours, blues, purples, yellows and occasionally red. Most of the flowers are quite small, ranging from about 5mm to 15mm. I have to find something to take with me to show the size of the flowers.  I also need an identification guide to let you know what the flowers are so if anyone knows a good publication on native flowers of north-east NSW please let me know

This blue flower is one of the bigger ones.

blue-flower_named_home_feb-2017

It was hard to capture the lovely mauve of this little pea like flower. The flower is around 5mm.

orchid_named_home_feb-2017

The star shape is common. Previous blogs have had the yellow and blue star shaped flower. This walk I found a pale purple star shaped flower. This flower is about 10mm in size.

purple-flowers_named_home_feb-2017

More purple flowers. A bit bigger in size and a bit hairier. Grows closer to the ground than the other flower which are on stalks.

purple-hairy-flower_named_home_feb-2017

A small yellow pea type of flower similar to the mauve flower a few flowers back, a about the same size. I  love the red stripes. This one comes with a bonus water droplet.

yellow-pea-flower_named_home_feb-2017

More yellow flowers. A lovely bunch of tiny yellow puff balls. The whole bunch would be no more than 12mms.

yellow-puff-balls_named_home_feb-2017

A bit of rain saw the mosses come back to life after seemingly disappearing during the dry spell. The smaller star moss and the feathery moss that cascades over the log.

moss_named_home_feb-2017

A wonderful discovery was the Hyacinth Orchid just standing tall in the bush. No leaves or anything else, just a lovely flower spike about 20cms tall. It was the only one in the surrounding area. I haven’t been back for a week or so, so I wonder if it is still there?

hyacinth-orchid_named_home_feb-2017

Rain has put a bit of water into the dam, freshening up the water and the water plants are flowering. The Water Snowflake’s flower is a lovely flower. A wonderful fringe form and so white against the dark green leaves and water.

water-snowflake-flower_namedl_home_feb-2017

The Cape Waterlily is also flowering and the reeds are starting to set seed. Among the reeds is a number of frogs whose song at night is quite loud. Also flitting about the dam are a variety of Dragonflies.

house-dam_named_feb-2017

The little iridescent blue dragonfly doesn’t sit still as long as the larger dragonflies. They are different to the other Dragonflies as they  have their wings folded along their body.

dragonfly-small-blue01_namedl_home_feb-2017

The many blue dragonflies fly off, swoop and then land to catch their breath on any small piece of reed they can find.

dragonfly01_blue_named_home_feb-2017

There is as many red dragonflies as blues. They seem to land on the dead reeds on the ground although some never seem to land. The red and blues also fly around the house almost like a patrol flying back and forth along the front verandah, occasionally flying under the verandah roof.

dragonfly01_red_named_home_feb-2017

Now this little bloke is so different from the others, not only in colour and patterns, but seems to prefer to land on the end of seed heads of the water plants and then stick it’s rear end up in the air. It doesn’t seem to mind how it has it’s wings either.

dragonfly01_spots_namedl_home_feb-2017

I found this orange dragonfly at my besties but they are also at my place but not as common as the others.

dragonfly_named_binna-burra_feb-2017

The Blue Gingers have the most delightful flowers. The flower spikes have so many tiny flowers and buds that there is always a number of flowers open so the bees have a chance to get inside. As I have said before, the bees have to scrunch to get at the pollen of the Blue Ginger flowers.

bee_ginger_named_binna-burra_feb-2017

The native Blue-banded Bees certainly love the Blue Ginger flowers and have a good scrunching technique as well.

blue-banded-bee_ginger_named_binna-burra_feb-2017

This Summer, my verandahs have been taken over by night spiders. Unfortunately they have become very lazy and leave their webs up during the day. Luckily they have been catching lots of insects so the web is easy to see but there may have been a time or two where I have walked into a web.

 

night-spider_named_home_feb-2017

There are quite a number of Bull Ant nests in the bush. When I try to get a photo, I make sure I look all around to see if there are any outside the nest on patrol or bring back food to the nest. When they bite you know you have been bitten!

bullant_named_home_feb-2017

I was surprised to find the Satin Bower Birds bower was still in operation and chock-a-block with a variety of blue bits and pieces in the collection. The only things that come from my place are the blue pegs. I know when a Bower Bird has come calling when I find the peg basket up ended. The Satin Bower Birds have made my place home. Years ago they only came here when it was too cold in the Gibraltar Ranges and leaving when it got too hot here.

the-bower_named_home_feb-2017

On our mini-holiday, we managed to get to the beach at sunrise one morning. The sunrise over the sea is fantastic.

sunrise_gold_named_ballina_feb-2017

The Seagull was patient and seemed to like getting its picture taken early in the morning.

seagull_sunrise_named_ballina_feb-2017

There was a line-up of Seagulls checking out the surf.

seagull_lineup_named_ballina_feb-2017

One of my favourite photos of February. Just a branch on the beach. I was tempted to put the photo in the blog upside down.

beach-reflection_named_ballina_feb-2017

Well it’s getting dark so I must head off to bed. I hope you have enjoyed this little bit of my world in February.

I leave you with the Paperbark tree and the street light.

tree_night_named_ballina_feb-2017

The Fast Joey Hops Around

One morning, a Red-necked Wallaby  Joey and his Mum were enjoying the garden. When all of a sudden the Joey decided it was time to climb out of Mum’s pouch and test out his hopping skills to see how fast he could get around the garden.

“Hey Mum, I think I might go for a very fast hop over there.”

joey07_fast_named_home_jan-2017

“I better check out what’s around just in case.”

joey04_fast_named_home_jan-2017

“Maybe I’ll hop over that way”

joey02_fast_named_home_jan-2017

“No…..I’m going to hop really fast this way”
“Mum…..Mum….watch me go Mum”

joey01_fast_named_home_jan-2017

“Watch out for your tail Mum ‘cos here I come.”

 

joey06_fast_named_home_jan-2017

And like a rocket, the Joey came hurtling back to Mum.

joey03_fast_named_home_jan-2017

“Hey Mum, that was fun!”
“Yes dear, you really can hop fast.”

joey05_fast_named_home_jan-2017

Birds. Bugs, Flowers and Things

I love it when I have a mixed lot of photos I have taken. This blog does contain a lot of birds and things that have been previously in past blogs but they keep doing things that are different or I just like the photo and hope you do too. There is one photo that has something different from the usual photos, can you spot it?

The weather over winter and early spring has been dry with some hot days and some windy days. Since 1 August to end of October there only a couple of days where there was good rainfall, but only 14 days of rain over 3 months. Some of the flowering plants have enjoyed the dry. This year the bottlebrushes and paperbarks have had the best flowering ever.

One of the things I like to photograph is when I can see faces in things. These are a couple I have seen lately. Can you see the faces too? The first on was taken at the beach during a walk after a North Coast Landcare get together.

Can you see a dog?

dog-rock_named_coffs-harbour_oct-2016

Sometimes the faces can seem rather scary. I had a feeling that someone was watching me.

tree-face_named_-sept-2016

The Red-necked Wallabies have had a bumper Joey season this year, so it may indicate that the grass in the paddocks will soon turn green and there will be a good summer. These two were eating beside the veranda where there are patches of feed. The Joey may be too big for the pouch but still likes to get a drink from Mum.

red-necked-wallabies_named_home_oct-2016

One plant that has had a fabulous flowering this year has been the Native Frangipanni. The birds and insects are always around the tree in the early morning and late evening.

native-frangapanni_named_home_oct-2016

My besties garden always has flowers as the rainfall there is much better than at my place. I love the way that this flower seems to explode towards you.

flower_named_binna-burra_oct-2016

The colours of this small flower are stunning adding a splash of colour throughout the garden.

flower02_named_binna-burra_oct-2016

My hanging pot of bromeliads have never had so many of these striking red flowers. I counted six flowers around the hanging pot. Yes that is a bird’s nest I found on the ground and was placed in the pot.

bromiliad-red-flowers_named_home_oct-2016

I wanted a few flowers around and planted some Alyssum seeds and they all came up giving cascades of white flowers from the many pots they were planted in. There were bees and this Hover Fly (I think) buzzing around. What a golden coloured fly!!!

hover-fly_named_home_oct-2106

Other visitors to the Alyssum flowers were small butterflies. I managed to get a photo of the Ochre Butterfly before is zoomed off to another flower in the garden.

ochre_named_home_oct-2016

You can see how dry the ground was when I took a photo of a Meadow Argus. They prefer to land on the ground. The underside of their wings seem fluffy and dull…..

meadow-argus02_named_home_oct-2016

….but the inside wings are very colourful.

meadow-argus03_named_home_oct-2016

In late October the Caper White Butterflies started to fly through my place on their migration to SE Queensland. They have been constantly been in the garden since then. The Pentas is a great butterfly attracting bush.

caper-white-butterfly05_named_home_oct-2016

While walking around Grafton we spied some bee activity around a large Camphor Laurel. I am glad they were too busy to notice me trying to get some photos. When we went back a couple of weeks later there weren’t many bees around at all. Sadly I suspect the Council may have sprayed the nest.

bee-hive_named_grafton_oct-2016

The coming of warm days brings out the insects. There are a good number of varieties of flys at the moment. This brown fly spent some time walking around the rim of the jug on the window sill.

fly_named_home_oct-2016

While this insect preferred the window to walk about.

insect_named_home_sept-2016

The garden also has its share of insects and bugs. I love the colours on this beetle, don’t you?.

insect_named_binna-burra_oct-2016

The Dragonflies are swooping around the garden and the dams. This is the blue variety. I  think will do a blog just on Dragonflies as I have some other varieties.

dragonfly_named_home_oct-2016

I just had to include another White-throated Honeyeater and the hanging watering come small bird birdbath pot. He looks to be saying “Ok mate, where’s my water!!!”

white-throated-honeyeater_named_home_oct-2016

On the walk along the beach I spotted some birds sitting on some rock off the shore. The Pied Cormorants were doing their washing.

cormorants_named_coffs-harbour_oct-2016

Here is bird number 91 I have identified on my place. (I say “I” but has been a team effort from lots of people in my network.) The Common Bronzewing was just strolling along but I managed to get a not very good photo.

common-bronzewing_named_home_oct-2016

Back at the beach walk, on the way down to the beach through the dune I saw a New Holland Honeyeater gathering material for the nest.I’m sure the spider didn’t mind a bit of web taken.

new-holland-honeyeater_named_coffs-harbour_oct-2016

Isn’t it funny how birds can have their heads looking back. The Brown Pigeon was certainly keeping an eye on me.

brown-oigeon_named_binna-burra_oct-2016

Amongst the vegetation, chit chatting away the Eastern Whipbird foraged for insects. Their distinctive whip crack call (from You Tube by Linda Hansbauer) many people know but when they are on the ground bustling about the have an insane cackle going on.

eastern-whip-bird_named_binna-burra_oct-2016

The most elusive bird at my besties is the Green Catbird and I am always excited when I find a Catbird amongst the foliage.

cat-bird_named_binna-burra_oct-2016

In Spring, the Figbirds arrive at my place. Late one afternoon I found this pair cosying up for the night among the branches of the fig tree.

figbirds_named_home_oct-2016

Of course you have seen lots of Blue-faced Honeyeaters on the Honey Gem Grevillea in my previous blogs but the way they can have a snack upside down always fascinates me.

blue-faced-honeyeater_named_home_oct-2016

The Yellow-faced Honeyeater is contemplating the first flower on a Grevillea I planted a few years ago. I will have to try to find out the name of this Grevillea.

yellow-faced-honeyeater_named_home_oct-2016

The Tawny Frogmouth (or it may be a Marbled Frogmouth) has the most basic of nests. Just a few twigs thrown onto a flattish spot in a tree. This bird hatched two babies.

tawny-frogmouth_named_binna-burra_oct-2016

Late in the evening, a walk along the shore at Ballina saw many pelicans coming in to roost. First stopping on the light post to make sure the fishermen weren’t cleaning their catch. It’s almost time to go….

pelican_named_ballina_sept-2016

…..the moon is up casting a glow so I must be off. See you next time.

moon_named_oct-2016

New and Old – Big and Small

What a mixed bag of photos I have this time. I just grabbed some photos from the end of last month that I liked which weren’t put in the previous blog. I am slowly catching up. I would like to write more but am not feeling well, just a sinus thing but my concentration isn’t that good.

At the moment, the Red-necked Wallabies are hopping through the garden and the bush, some with small Joeys and others with a protective male. This bloke kept a close eye on me as I walked around.

red-necked-wallabies_named_home_sept-2016

One thing I have been meaning to do is put a whole lot of photos showing the symmetry in nature or just how plants have their unique way of growing. Succulents are fascinating in the many forms, shapes and colours they have. Here is just a couple I have found recently.

succulant01named_binna-burra_sept-2016

The tight centre gradually spreads and becomes redder on the margins with some leaves turning almost completely red.

succulant02_named_binna-burra_sept-2016

The Jelly Bean Cactus has to be one of my favourites. Do you have a favourite cactus?

jelly-bean-succulant_named_binna-burra_sept-2016

This is the first flower of a Grevillea I planted last year, fascinating flowers aren’t they?

grevillea_named_home_sept-2016

I call this flower a Chinese Lantern. This year the plant had so many flowers, much more than any year previously. You can see the 3 different stages with the pod to the right of the flower and the next new flower about to open behind.

chinese-lantern_named_home_sept-2016

Another plant who has had the best show of flowers ever is the Orange Trumpet. Yes I did plant it to grow over a shed.

orange-trumpet-creeper_named_home_sept-2016

When the bush lemon tree flowered, the insect came so there was always someone buzzing around the tree, crawling over the flowers or getting inside the flowers being productive. I don’t think the Stingless Native Bees could fit much more pollen in their pollen sacks.

native-bees01_named_home_sept-2016

Even the other bees had heaps of pollen as well.

bee_named_home_sept-2016

This ant was very careful when it moved over the flowers.

ant_named_home_sept-2016

I have never seen this fly before. A lovely orange with the reddest eyes!!!!

fly_named_home_sept-2016

Every now and then I find a native snail-shell. Occasionally see a snail but not one of these. I still haven’t identified which species of snail it is.

snail-shell_home_sept-2016

One afternoon, the Spangled Drongos came in for a bath. The bath certainly makes a spangly Spangled Drongo!!!

spangled-drongo_named_home_sept-2016

On a wetland right beside the Pacific Highway, a flock of Magpie Geese stopped over on their migration to rest and recharge. It was hard to get into a good position to get some photos as the shoulder of the Highway is very narrow there and I didn’t want to walk into the farmers over grown paddock either.

magpie-geese_named_south-grafton_sept-2016

A new addition to the neighbourhood has been circling overhead. The Square-tailed Kite also has decided to make a nest in a tree across the road. I didn’t see any babies and I think I may have missed them all together..

square-tailed-kite_flying_named_home_sept-2016

The late afternoon light was good for a photo shoot.

square-tailed-kite_named_home_sept-2016

Another new comer to my garden was the Spectacled Monarch making number bird number 89 spotted or heard on my property.

spectacled-monarch_named_home_sept-2016

Meanwhile, at my besties place, the Noisy Friarbird was turning itself inside out trying to get the Noisy Miner to get away from the bird bath

friarbird_noisy-miner_named_binna-burra_sept-2016

This is my August

August. The final days of winter and the early spring flowers begin to emerge. The weather has been so nice, typical north coast days of mid twenties with cool nights. The nights are cool at my place especially as the cold breezes blow down the Gibraltar Ranges bringing quite chilly evenings and mornings. Didn’t get below zero degrees at the house this winter but there were frosts in the lower part of my property.

As usual, we have been driving around just checking out our world, discovering new things and rediscovering stuff. On one such drive-about, we came across some little Brown Quails warming in the afternoon sun by the side of a back road near Billen Cliffs

brown quail group_named_larnook_aug 2016

Quail are such funny looking birds but have a certain amount of cuteness that makes you smile when you find them bustling about.

brown quail01_named_larnook_aug 2016

The sun was almost set when a cacophony started heading toward us as we stopped at my besties house. The Yellow-tailed Black Cockatoos had come from the pine forest and up to the gums around the house to roost for the night. There were around twenty to thirty birds squawking in the trees. It was getting dark and I was surprised that I managed to get a photo.

yellow tailed black cockatoos_named_binna burra_aug 2016

At my place, there has been activity among the trees as some of the eucalypts, Tallowwoods and Bloodwoods, are flowering. Most of the birds are here nearly all year round. The Yellow-faced Honeyeaters can be heard chip chip chipping away during the day.

yellow faced honeyeater_named_home_aug 2016

It seems like I have a photo of an Eastern Yellow Robin in most of my blogs but they are such a lovely little bird. This time here is a rear view for a change.

eastern yellow robin_named_binna burra_aug 2016

The Grey Fantails are so busy swooping around the garden.

grey fantail_named_binna bura_aug 2016

I was sitting in the study when a bird flew up and down the verandah. It didn’t sit still for very long (I have another entrant in “this is where the bird was a second ago” photos). The Spotted Pardalote sat still long enough for a photo through the glass door.

spotted pardalote_named_home_aug 2016

The King Parrots always drop by and have a look through the door to see what I am doing!!!

king parrot_named_home_aug 2018

My besties bird bath has been the source of so many bird photos. The little Striated Thornbill looks like it saw me as it landed on the bird bath.

striated thornbill_named_binna burra_aug 2016

One drive took us to Ballina where a late lunch of fish and chips by the estuary near where we have a swim in summer. The tide was out and there were a number of waders way out sifting the sand for their lunch. This Masked Lapwing patrolled the area of sand in front of us, wandering up and down. It was funny to see it on the sand and not walking around the grass in the park.

masked lapwing_named_ballina_aug 2016

The White-faced Heron was always finding something to eat as it wandered with purpose on the sands.

white faced heron_named_ballina_aug 2016

In a nearby tree, a Little Cormorant gave me a suspicious look, but still sat looking over the estuary.

little pied cormorant_named_ballina_aug 2016

The butterflies are just starting to be a regular sight in the garden. Don’t you think that the Orange Streaked Ringlet looks rather angry? I liked the colours as it sat on one of the garden ornaments.

orange streaked ringlet_named_binna burra_aug 2016

One morning the sun filtered through the trees and highlighted some spider webs in the garden. I just had to stop washing up and grab my camera.

spider web01_named_aug 2016

I don’t normally have such luck with spider web photos but these two really made my day.

spider web02_named_aug 2016

One afternoon driving home along the Gwydir Highway, I spotted something out of the corner of my eye as I went over the Tindal Bridge. I was sure it was Wedged-tailed Eagles but they were sitting on the ground not far from the edge of the road. See my last blog on the Wedged-tailed Eagles if you haven’t already seen it. When they took to the sky it was a magnificent sight.

wedged tailed eagle_named_ramornie_aug 2016

At my place, the Red-necked Wallabies are always hanging around. This morning, the young Joey was being brave, until they sensed I was watching from the kitchen window. Some days they Joeys have a great time hopping about. A while ago this Joey was having a great time.

red necked wallaby and joey01_named_home_aug 2016

“Is he still there Mum?”

red necked wallaby_joey04_named_home_aug 2016

“Oh dear. I better hide so he won’t see me!”

red necked wallaby and joey02_named_home_aug 2016

The Joey finally decided to sit in the warming morning sun to contemplate the day ahead.

red necked wallaby_joey03_named_home_aug 2016

The Bottlebrush had so many flowers this year, it was a magnet for the birds. The Friarbirds had taken over the garden and spent a lot of time chasing the other birds from the Grevilleas and this Bottlebrush. The bees in the Bottlebrush made the garden buzz

bee_bottlebrush_named_home_aug 2016

Guess who came in for a snack?

rainbow lorikeet03_named_home_aug 2016

The Rainbow Lorikeets certainly add a splash of colour to the garden.

rainbow lorikeet01_named_home_aug 2016

The Friarbirds look so prehistoric don’t they?

noisy friarbird_named_home_aug 2016

The little Yellow-faced Honeyeaters were also chased about by the Friarbirds.

yellow faced honeyeater_bottlebrush_named_home_aug 2016

The Blue-faced Honeyeaters didn’t care either way when the Friarbirds carried on. At the Honey Gem Grevillea, their don’t care attitude was evident in The Battle for the Grevillea

blue faced honeyeater_named_home_aug 2016

Well the sun is going down……….

sunset_named_binna burra_aug 2016

…….and the Moon is on the rise. Thanks for reading

moon_named_home_aug 2016

 

June had something new as well as old

The rain finally came in June. The big dam, which leaks, almost filled which is lovely to see even though it only lasts a few weeks before it’s a puddle again. The frogs certainly liked the water and there were a number of different types of frogs calling.

dam_home_named_june 2016

The frogs were also on this little dam which is more of a wetland than a functioning dam. The animals drink from here as well as some birds. Dragonflies were flitting about on both dams.

dam_reeds_home_named_june 2016

As usual, we do our drives around the north coast and one day, as we were heading west out of Casino we came across this Long-necked Tortoise in the middle of the road with cars and trucks speeding by. A quick rescue mission unfolded and it was taken to the dam up a side road not far from where we picked it up.

long-necked tortoise_casino_named_june 2016

At my besties one of the old farm sheds, this one was a piggery, we have created a studio space for art exhibitions and rent the Lady Shed for workshops by all manner of people. We love rearranging and decorating the Lady Shed with all sorts of things found or created

lady shed shelf_binna burra_named_june 2016

I love this owl!!!

lady shed shelf_owl_binna burra_named_june 2016

Quite often when pillows or things are moved there are skinks that scurry away. This day it was a bit cold and some of the skinks were a bit too cold to move too fast.

lady shed_skink_binna burra_named_june 2016

Spiders are also disturbed as we do a bit of a cleaning and moving stuff around when there is someone else going to use the Lady Shed Studio. I have lost my spider ID book so I can’t tell you what is this one.

lady shed_spider_binna burra_named_june 2016

There is a lovely cane light shade in the Lady Shed Studio. We always check to ensure that no one has decided that the light shade would make quite a nice house. Most times a spider or two is moved on or a mud daubers nest is removed. This time a little micro bat with only a face a mother could love had taken up residence. Luckily it had gone the next day before the workshop has started. I think it may be a Lesser Long-eared Bat.

lesser long eared bat_lady shed_binna burra_named_june 2016

In the insulation, just under the corrugated iron, lives a Carpet Snake. It is a lovely warm place for a snake to spend winter. This Carpet Snake has been living in the Lady Shed Studio for ages and sometimes can cause a bit of angst among the workshop participants.

lady shed_carpet snake_binna burra_named_june 2016

One afternoon I was driving home from work when I spied a Black-necked Stork patrolling after the rains had replenished a wetland. When he saw me he just casually walked away.

black necked stork_south grafton_named_june 2016

On the drive west of Casino in a place called Piora, we came across a little watercourse that had a couple of Spoonbills, some ducks and a Heron. The Spoonbill was the only one who didn’t move off when the car stopped.

spoonbill_piora_named_june 2016

As it has been very dry at my place with only occasional showers and 2 days of good rainfalls. The normally abundance of birds has deserted the garden and surrounding bush. The Lewins Honeyeater has stayed waiting for the blossoms to appear. The rain bought out the Honey Gem flowers.

lewins honeyeater_home_named_june 2016

The Satin Bowerbirds have also stayed around as they steal snacks from the chook yard. They also have a been stealing all manner of blue things from the surrounding properties.

satin bowerbird_male_home_named_june 2016

The number of Satin Bowerbirds usually increases when it gets a bit cold in the Gibraltar Ranges. This day when I took these photos the trees were full of the mad chattering of Satin Bowerbirds.

satin bowerbird_female_home_named_june 2016

I did a bit of a bush walk one day. Just near the dam in the first photo there has been a bower for a number of years. The blue objects were strewn in all directions from the bower up to 2 metres away.

satrin bower birds bower_home_named_june 2016

So many blue objects. I have no idea whose place they get the blue bottle tops from as I don’t have any and my recycling is always in a sealed wool bale sack. I do think the strips of blue are from a disintegrating tarp in my building materials area.

satrin bower birds_treasure_home_named_june 2016

The bird bath is always kept with water in it for the birds. Actually I have three places where the birds can get a drink and a wash. This one is one of the favourites. You can always hear the constant call of Eastern Yellow Robins in the bush and they come to the garden for an insect snack or head to the bird bath.

eastern yellow robin_home_named_june 2016

The little Striated Thornbills are regular bird bath regulars. They only stay for a quick wash and drink before they are off.

striated thornbills_home_named_june 2016

One day I heard a call I didn’t recognise at the bird bath. At first I didn’t see anyone but then a head popped up whilst the bird was clinging to the edge of the bird bath with its tail in the water. Just then, another bird flew in a sat on the edge. The big feet gave it away. This was the first time I had seen the White-throated Treecreepers in the bird bath.

white-throated treecreepers_home_named_june 2016

At my besties there are always Eastern Whipbirds calling and foraging in the garden. This one was muttering to itself while it turned over leaves and small rocks hoping for a bite to eat.

eastern whipbird_binna burra_named_june 2016

Of course there a the little Eastern Yellow Robins in her garden as well. They are such a cute little bird don’t you think?

eastern yellow robin_binna burra_named_june 2016

As I wander about

It’s been ages since I have had time to get things sorted, to take time for things and actually sit down to set out to write a bit. I have been taking photos of all manner of stuff – as you will see. It is difficult to have a clear pathway of thoughts, to put ideas down and try to make sense so that you can follow where I have been and what I have seen. Many a time I just take off to see what I can discover and see something that I find interesting, colourful or part of our world that some people would just walk by everyday and not think of the beauty. Perhaps I look at the world in a different way, to imagine in my head what I see, grab my camera and let the lens take me where I think it should go. Enough of a jumble of thoughts – as The Beatles sang

“Thoughts meander like a restless wind
Inside a letter box
They tumble blindly as they make their way
Across the universe”

So lets go across the universe or through a small part of my world. Starting at the beginning. Early one misty morning, some rogue cattle were walking along the road when we was taking a walk.

cattle_duroux rd_named_august 2015

Further down the road, the spiders webs were all through patches of grass. Small cup shaped webs dotted the side of the road in their hundreds.

spider webs_purgatory ck rd_named_august 2015

As it is still rather cool here I am still out in the bush every couple of weeks to cut some firewood. One morning I noticed the White-winged Choughs doing their daily march along the clearing with their incessent chatter as they kicked over sticks and rocks looking for their breakfast. They had an almost straight line as they marched up the hill.

white winged choughs_named_home_sept 2015

Sometimes you can look up and see a Spangled Drongo fly past the moon, even in the late afternoon.

spangled drongo_moon_binna burra_july 2015

I though the Bellwood Cormorant Hotel was rather fab but the double decker Osprey nest near Chinderah has a far better vantage point.

osprey nest_named_chindara_august 2015

While we were having lunch in the Tweed Heads industrial/shopping complex, we watched as a bird swooped across the car park, grab what we think was a lizard and go back to the roof top and eat away. After I took the photo (OK I took heaps of photos), I discovered it was an Australian or Nankeen Kestral. What a pretty bird don’t you think?

nankeen kesral_named_tweed heads_august 2015

Speaking of pretty, the Emerald Doves are out and about in numbers at the moment. This bird was not all that content having me stalk it to try and get a good photo.

emerald dove_named_binna burra_august 2015

It stuck its bum in the air as if to say “Go on….take a photo of my best side!!!”

emerald dove_rear_named_binna burra_august 2015

This little bird was sitting in the tree singing its little lungs out.

honeyeater_banora_named_august 2015

Having a cuppa on the verandah one morning, one of the local King Parrots decided to pop over and see if we had any snacks.

king parrot_named_home_august 2015

The Bar-shouldered Dove didn’t seem to mind the Brush Turkeys leaf raking exercise. The turkey was flicking leaves so high into the air! The turkey’s litter mound is about 5 meters away from where it was methodically raking leaves.

bar shouldered dove_brush turkey_named_binna burra_august 2015

One morning I found a Rainbow Lorikeet sitting on the ladder in the old swimming pool looking rather grumpy.

rainbow lorikeet_named_home_july 2015

OK….now this is where things take a different direction for a while. One day we decided to walk across the Clarence River on the walkway under the Grafton Bridge. The structure has been graffitied over the years and the layers of paint with a bit of rust made lovely colours and patterns.

rust01_grafton bridge_named_august 2015

I like the rust colours.

rust02_grafton bridge_named_august 2015

This green almost looked like moss.

rust03_grafton bridge_named_august 2015

One of the hundred of thousand rivets holding te bridge together. Small but significent.

rust04_grafton bridge_named_august 2015

The walkway along the bridge also had two tunnels at either end which have always been “decorated”. Sometimes some of the graffiti has to be added to doesn’t it?

graffiti_grafton_named_august 2015

Othertimes the message is what everyone needs to hear.

graffiti_named_grafton_august 2015

One of my favourite cafes in Grafton is the Tilted Teaspoon. Skye has a wonderful sense of decoration with ever changing bits and pieces gleaned from Op-Shops and garage sales.

old case_named_grafton_august 2015

The water below the bridge has shapes that change as the water ripples from passing water craft. This one is rather spooky.

ghost face_named_grafton_august 2015

Speaking of spooky, what is the blue flash that appeared in my besties loungeroom?

ghost room_named_august 2015

I love the “eye lashes” on the bullet hole in the road sign.

bullet hole sign_purgatory ck rd_named_august 2015

Enough of the different stuff and back to colour and nature. The red flower of the eucalypt just seems to burst in a riot of colour.

red flower_named_grafton_august 2015

One of the first flowers that I started to photograph many years ago were the Azalias of the next door neighbours. They had so many varieties that cascaded over the front suburban fence. The colours were superb. My besties Azalias have been a wonderful splash of colour around her garden. The deep pink flowers are lovely. One of the surprises when taking photos is the unexpected bits that are in and around the flowers.

azalia_dark pink_named_binna burra_august 2015

This flower was hidden inside the same bush as the pink one above.

azalia_pink_named_binna burra_august 2015

The red Azalias are such a stand out in the garden.

azalia_red_named_binna burra_august 2015

The Irises are dotted through the garden not being showy but adding a bit to the shape and form in the garden. It also is the home for a small spider.

iris_named_binna burra_august 2015

The lillies come in a range of colours. I love these ones.

flower_named_binna burra_august 2015

The yellow Day Lilies bring that end of the spectrum to the garden as they stand tall in the sunshine.

day lily_named_binna burra_august 2015

The undersides are just as impressive.

day lily01_named_binna burra_august 2015

The Nastursiums are just starting to appear. I love their colours and shapes as the sit low in the garden trailing over rocks, logs and borders.

nastursium_named_binna burra_august 2015

The Pentas are wonderful as so many little flowers gather together in a ball of colour.

pentas_pink_named_binna burra_august 2015

These flowers like to look at what is going on at ground level. The little bells cluster together.

flower02_named_binna burra_august 2015

This is such a tight ball of very small flowers that have such a lovely scent as you brush past.

flower01_named_binna burra_august 2015

The orchids are out now as well. Again, this flower is so small as it spikes out from the plant with it’s almost see through petals.

orchid_named_binna burra_august 2015

Walking about, it is always good to look up. The shapes colours and forms of the Foam Bark leaves are great.

foam bark leaves_named_binna burra_august 2015

A good discovery walk wouldn’t be complete without a fungi find. I have never seen a pink fungi before, have you?

fungus_pink_named_binna burra_august 2015

The fire has been lit, giving its colours that always surprise.

fire03_named_binna burra_august 2015

Or the swirling shapes where you can see so many different things. What can you see?

fire02_named_binna burra_august 2015

Looking deep inside the fire.

fire01_named_binna burra_august 2015

The Moon was smiling that night. A glowing grin in the sky.

moon_named_august 2015

Well it’s time to sweep and tidy up before I get going. See you next time OK

works done_named_grafton_august 2015

“Limitless undying love
Which shines around me like a million suns
It calls me on and on across the universe”

Birds, bugs and things in April

As you know I love to get about when I can, discovering new things or rediscovering stuff. I love living in a bio-diverse region where the trip to the mountains or to the coast always sends a surprise encounter. Over the month so far I have seen so many wonderful things this world has, sometimes it may just be something that I saw that I found to be wonderous whereas others have just walked by probably thinking what the hell is that bloke doing with that camera.

So…..this wander through my days I hope fills you with a bit of love for our nature and environment in which we inhabit as it does for me.

I do find butterflies amazing creatures, as you probably have noticed as a lot of my blogs seem to have a butterfly or two. This small butterfly, about 17mm in size, has been whizzing around my besties garden and mine as well –  a Small Green-banded Blue butterfly.

small green-banded blue butterfly_named_binna burra_april 2015

I was wading through the water at Taylor Lagoon when all bout there were dragonflies zipping here, zipping there on their mission to do…..waht do dragonflies do when they zip about like that. Well after a while some settled on the sticks poking out of the water. Their irridecence was amazing to see. Unfortunately the dragonfly isn’t quite in focus but I love the effect of the water, don’t you?

dragonfly_blue_named_broken head_april 2015

This dragonfly has a great grip on the stick.

dragonfly_yellow_named_broken head_april 2015

While wading in the shallows I looked at the water and the reflections of the over-hanging bottlebrush and sedges around the edge. I think it was facinating the way the image always changed as the water rippled and moved with the wind. This photo was my favourite of the couple I took.

water patterns_named_broken head_april 2015

The shadow of the tree looked like it was walking across the rock face. What do you see?

shadow on rock_named_broken head_april 2015

I love the contrast of colours, the shadows and where the rock landed (or was put by my bestie lol)

rock colours_named_broken head_april 2015

Shells. I love seeing the shells and stuff that is on the beach. The light shining through the shell caught my eye form a distance.

shell_named_broken head_april 2015

I wonder how the small creatures can survive when the tide is out or is it how do they survive when the tide is in? This one found a nice little niche in the rocks. Aren’t the colours subtle but striking at the same time?

snail shell_named_broken head_april 2015

The number of tiny sand balls that were spread all along the shore was incredible. Some of the patterns made were so artistic.

sand ball_crab_named_broken head_april 2015

And here is the little bloke who spend a large amount of its life making those tiny sand balls.

sand crab_named_broken head_april 2015

“OK fella…..how about a bit of privacy. I didn’t come down to the beach to sit in the shade of my lovely green umbrella just to have you come along taking your photos….”

umbrella_seagull_named_broken head_april 2015

“If you are going to hang around with that camera, I’m off….”

seagull going_named_broken head_april 2015

As I was walking along the shore, all of a sudden there was a whoosh and a couple of Pelicans came flying along looking for a place to land. They are so big up close.

pelican_named_broken head_april 2015

As we walked along the beach, we were discussing how we hadn’t seen any White-bellied Sea Eagles or Brahminy Kites, which are nearly always here. All of a sudden, at the other end of the beach, there was a commotion with Seagulls wheeling about and then appeared the Sea Eagle with a fish. Even with the lens at full stretch they were still a long way a way.

sea eagle02_named_broken head_april 2015

Here is a close up as best as I could manage. The image is heavily cropped just to show the size of the fish.

sea eagle_fish_named_broken head_april 2015

There was also another White-bellied Sea Eagle just soaring around the sky looking for it’s own fish.

sea eagle01_named_broken head_april 2015

Meanwhile at the waters edge, a group of Crested Terns were having a bath and preening themselves trying to get their “hair” in order.

terns01_named_broken head_april 2015

I have no idea what this plant is but the spots of white among the rocks certainly stood out.

white flowers_named_broken head_april 2015

Even the Eastern Spinebill was too heavy for the Pentas making hanging on a bit of a chore.

eastern spine bill_named_binna burra_june 2014

The Whipbirds are always pocking around in the garden, flicking over leaves and bits of bark to try and find some insects and bugs to snack on.

whipbird_named_binna burra_june 2014

Over the past few weeks the Eastern Yellow Robins have seemed to appear in numbers in the garden. This one was sitting out front on the warm gravel early one morning. They are such sweet little birds.

yellow robin_named_home_april 2015

Heading into town early one misty morning, I spotted this Black-necked Stork (I really prefer Jabiru) stalking about the small pond where the “Tyre Turtle” lives. It was one of a pair. The other one was further back in the paddock in the ffog.

black-necked stork02_named_grafton_april 2015

Aren’t the colours great. I never noticed their red cap before either.

black-necked stork03_named_grafton_april 2015

The Water Dragon has set up home in my besties garden. Such a lovely prehistoric looking creature.

water dragon02_named_binna burra_april 2014

But they still enjoy a good laugh. Not really. He really enjoys a few bits of apple. The inside of his mouth is so pink.

water dragon01_named_binna burra_april 2015

That’s the end of what I have found in April so far. Hope you enjoyed seeing what I have seen.