In my garden again

Terri’s Sunday Stills: Kinda Backyard #Birding

Have a song to scroll to

Well I have done a post on the birds plus other things In my garden yesterday morning and long comes a photo challenge from Terri but this time only birds that come into my garden.

This post is some of the birds I couldn’t include in the last post as it would have been too long. Enjoy a few more backyard birding photos.

A Noisy Friarbird on a cold morning

Red-backed Wrens are a small delight to see

As are Superb Fairy Wrens

Red-browed Firetail Finches are often hopping about when the grass seeds are around

So are the Double-barred Finches

Fucous Honeyeaters are in the lower part of my place and occasionally come to the garden

Rufous Whistlers have been around since Spring and their song resounds in the bush

Golden Whistlers are in the gullies either side of the house and venture into the garden every now and then

Grey Fantails are often a bit showy

Little Thornbills are very quick and hard to spot. This is a Yellow-rumped Thornbill

The Striated Pardalote make nests in the sides of gullies. This one has made a hole on part of the garden and will fly out if I walk too close.

Spotted Pardalotes are so colourful and a quick flash in the garden

There are Leaden Flycatchers calling in the garden now

I love the purple eyes of Satin Bowerbirds

The female Satin Bowerbird is not as showy

I almost forgot to include a couple of parrots. The Musk Lorikeet has great markings

Crimson Rosella are quite a sight as they always arrive in numbers

The most surprising visitor to my garden was the Critically Endangered Regent Honeyeater in 2015. This rare bird became a bit of a celebratory for me as many long time birders have never seen one and there it was in my garden.

The A-team birds

The Bird Weekly Photo Challenge: Birds Starting With an A

This challenge made it easy living in Australia. There are quite a number but around here and on travels I only have a few, some I didn’t know their full name had Australian in it either.

Australian Figbird

Australian Raven

Australasian Grebe chick

Australian Gannet

Australian Magpie

Australasian Pipit

Australian Pelican

Australian White Ibis

Azure Kingfisher

This is September 2020

How are you going so far this year? I am still not allowed to drive so I haven’t had many photo excursions and at times didn’t really feel like taking photos. Do you have times like that too?

It is time to be in the garden and enjoy the warm days. A few days at my place the temperature was in the low 30’s which isn’t Spring weather, more like Summer. The rains that have been promised haven’t eventuated so I am using the dwindling dam water to keep the garden going as best I can. I have been doing a few projects both here at my place and at my besties.

The header photo is looking from my verandah into that part of the garden where the Grevilleas are having a great flowering this Spring.

Instead of having my usual song at the end, I decided to have it up front so you can have a listen while you scroll. So grab a cup of tea or coffee, perhaps a snack or if in the evening join me in a glass of your choice as it’s aperitivo time here. Enjoy

One project around the place was to do a rejuvenation of part of the shed. This will be the potting shed and have a lot of the gardening equipment and tools.

One of the bonuses of living on the north coast of NSW is being able to get down to the coast and watch the whales migrate.

Back at home for a few insects to start the photo journey of my September. The Pittosporum had so many flowers this year it was a treasure trove for the tiny Native Stingless Bees.

The Wide_brand Grass-dart butterfly was hard to catch as they didn’t sit still very long.

Southern Silver Ochre butterflies spent more time

The Black Jezebels came flying through regularly in September. The thing you notice is a white butterfly flitting among the flowers with its erratic flight. the next photo helps to explain.

This is the inside wings of the Black Jezebel. When they fly they give a sort of strobe effect designed to confuse any predators along with an erratic flight.

Another of the Jezebels, Southern Jezebels are always a delight to have in the garden. The Honey Gem Grevillea flowers were quite an attraction.

The Honey Gem and other grevilleas had an amazing flowering with a bit of rain in late August enough to get things happening in the garden in September. The Blue-faced Honeyeaters were the bullies of the garden chasing most of the birds, especially the noisy Friarbirds, away from the flowers.

But as you see the Noisy Friarbirds still were able to sneak in for a feed

Another of the Friarbird, Little Friarbirds, were constant visitors as well

I have been putting a bit of food out fro the birds every now and then but not every day so they don’t become dependent on food from me. The Female King Parrot really looked good with her breeding plumage.

The males were quite resplendent too. Remember Tiny, well he is still around the garden most days.

Leaden Flycatchers hung around the old swimming pool always on the lookout for a snack to come along.

I love their inquisitive looks so I had to include a second photo.

The Female Rufus Whistler also has an inquisitive look around the garden

The songs of the Rufus Whistlers have resounded in the bush all September. They are all around the surrounding forest occasionally coming into the garden. This male Rufus Whistler was singing in the garden early one morning.

One afternoon coming home from town, we were driving through South Grafton when a large flock of Yellow-tailed Black Cockatoos came screeching into the trees in peoples backyards.

The Satin Bowerbird found where I dropped a few bread crumbs on the verandah. Satin Bowerbirds are quite nervous and will take off at the slightest movement. I often get a few photos through the door while sitting at my desk if I am sneaky enough.

At my besties the little Red-backed Wren come through her garden in the afternoons looking for a bit to eat among the flowers and garden beds.

We were sitting on her verandah having a cup of tea when we saw a large bird fly into the lower part of the garden. When I got to the other end of the verandah I saw a White-faced Heron walking along with a large stick. I watch where he flew into a nearby tree but he nest was too well hidden.

The tiny Scarlet Honeyeaters prefer red Grevillea flowers

If you need a break, here’s a bit of sky with a wispy cloud face or what can you see?

Yes it is Spring in Australia so no Spring post couldn’t go past without a few lots of flower photos, First up, a Daisy with an insect trying to hide. All of the following photos are from my besties garden except when I mention it’s from mine.

The Dianthus are a pretty shade of pink in the garden.

The white Gerbera really stands out

There are quite a few different Gazanias. I love this pink one

or perhaps I like this one more

The Cornflowers looked a treat

This Hibiscus was a new planting and I didn’t expect to see a flower this year on a small bush. the deep red is stunning

The violas are self seeding and springing up everywhere in the garden, even in the paths.

This is the red Hibiscus that came from my family home and is one of a couple that are in my garden.

My besties Lions Tails. Such an unusual plant.

It has been a great year for Grevilleas. Here is a selection from my place. Not too sure what this one is. I thought it was a Robyn Gordon but that doesn’t have yellow tips

This is a Robyn Gordon I am sure

The Ever strong Honey Gem, a great food source for birds as well as insects

After the fire at my place, there has been a lot of different species of Lomandra appearing. This is part of the flower stalk of a Lomandra mulitflora

A small native flower – a Gorse Bitter Pea. There are a lot of pea plants and many look similar

This pea flower is a Heathy Parrot Pea. Bunches of flowers on a long stalk. Most of these flowers are about 10mm or about half an inch as are many of the pea plant flowers.

The Paperbarks didn’t flower as well as I thought they would as most of the other native flowers like the Bottlebrush and Grevillea have. The flower is similar to a bottle brush flower only yellow instead of red.

I found this flowering plant on a walk along the trails of Evans Head. The aim was to photograph the native coastal plants flowers but by the time I was able to get there many had finished flowering. At least I saw the whales.

This Australian native flower is one of my all time favourites and is always a treat to find in the bush. I just love Flannel Flowers.

I finally found someone who laughs at my jokes.

Well it’s sunset so I better get going and you should too. Drop me a line if you found a favourite photo

One of the things about this September was that our Moon had risen before the sun had set. I love a Moon and a blue sky don’t you?

Also for Su’s Changing Seasons, September 2020

The Brown Honeyeaters – A Spring Story

During Spring, the Brown Honeyeater decided that a Lilli Pilli in a pot near the verandah at my besties house was a great place to build a nest. It gave me an opportunity to have a sneak peek into the life of Brown Honeyeaters.

Sitting on the verandah, having a cup of tea, we noticed a small bird flying in and out of the Lilli Pilli tree in a pot near the verandah. I had to go and see what was going on. I found the start of the nest construction. They must have been doing it for a few days before we saw the goings on. Both the female and the male were building the nest.
181214_brown honeyeater_nest_construction1
A few days later the nest was taking shape.181214_brown honeyeater_nest_construction2
All manner of vegetation –  grass, bark, lichen and spiders web was used. 181214_brown honeyeater_nest_construction3

This is the location of the nest.
181214_brown honeyeater_nest_construction8_location

Looks like I was spotted!
181214_brown honeyeater_nest_construction4_spotted
Off she goes to gather more materials.181214_brown honeyeater_nest_construction5_flying
Every now and then she would wiggle about in the nest to get the shape right.181214_brown honeyeater_nest_construction6_testing
She was in there for a long time this day. I think she was laying an egg.181214_brown honeyeater_nest_construction7_egg_laying

Yes! I was right, an egg is in the nest. It is so small. Probably about a thumb nail size.
181214_brown honeyeater_nest_egg_one
A few days later another egg appeared.181214_brown honeyeater_nest_egg_two

It didn’t take long for some chicks to make an appearance. I missed out getting any photos when they were small pink chicks. A rather nasty storm was coming so my bestie dragged the pot onto the verandah. Luckily she did as the wind blew hard, the rain poured down and there was a bit of hail.
181214_brown honeyeater_nest_chick_two

Now comes the hard work for the parents. Both the female and the male were constantly flying back and forth with food for their babies.
181214_brown honeyeater_nest_feeding_bug

Ooops….looks like I was spotted again.
181214_brown honeyeater_nest_feeding_spotted

Chick one gets a morsel.
181214_brown honeyeater_nest_feeding1
and then chick two.181214_brown honeyeater_nest_feeding2
Part of being a parent is cleaning up after your children. This is the removal of what I call a poo sac. This keeps the nest clean and stops insects, mainly ants, getting into the nest.
181214_brown honeyeater_nest_poo_sac

They are getting bigger. When I approached, they would flatten themselves against the sides of the nest.
181214_brown honeyeater_nest_chick_two_older

After a busy day looking after the chicks, it’s good to have a bath and relax.
181214_brown honeyeater_nest_bird_bath

Unfortunately I missed out on the chicks leaving the nest. It didn’t take long from eggs to flying little birds.

I think I am lucky to be part of the Brown Honeyeaters life. They have all gone from my besties garden now. Off on their migratory path to a new place for Summer and I hope they come back next year. We are going to leave the nest in place to see what may happen.

Gulls

The word prompt from city sonnet: Gulls

The Gulls flew while the Cormorants just bobbed about hunting fish
terns_cormorants_seagulls01_brunswick heads_named_feb 2014

Soaring majestically in the sky
sea eagle_gulls_named_brooms head_jan 2015

Or hurriedly leaving the beach in a tangle of wings
yamba_200710_gulls tern flight_crop

Or just standing at the waters edge enjoying the sand between the toes.
seagull02_ballina_named_feb 2014

Finding a shady spot on the beach on a warm day
umbrella_seagull_named_broken head_april 2015
Looking nonchalant
seagull01_close_ballina_named_feb 2014

Or being cheeky
171017_blog challenge_bird_gull

Enjoying the morning sun
seagull_sunrise_named_ballina_feb-2017

Or a surprise Gull – an Australian Gull Butterfly
australian gull butterfly_named_home_feb 2015

Sweet

The Daily Post word prompt: Sweet

What could be sweeter than an Eastern Yellow Robin sitting on a garden chair looking for an insect in the garden
180215_sweet_yellow robin

Perhaps a Red-browed Firetail Finch having a bath on a hot day
180215_sweet_red browed firetail finch

Or a Variegated Wren contemplating having a dip
180215_sweet_varigated wren

Or a Grey Fantail splashing about
180215_sweet_grey fantail

Or is it a tiny Brown Thornbill enjoying a splash around
180215_sweet_thornbill

Did you have a Sweet favourite?

Meet Kurrie

I’d like you to meet Kurrie. Kurrie has been living at my besties place for a few weeks now. Luckily Kurries parents are always close by and are very good parents. Kurrie has survived 2 hail storms plus countless rain events as well as hot sunny days. We are enjoying Kurries company and will be sad when Kurrie finally decides it’s time to leave.

Here is a small photo story of our new friend Kurrie

Kurrie lives high in the tree tops not far from the house. Kurries place looks a bit thrown together but as I mentioned has survived the weather. You can just see one of Kurries parents on the right.
currie_the nest_up high

Here is a bit of a closer look at Kurries place. We were never sure that there was anyone in the nest.
currie_the nest

Then one day we could hear this raucous sound and there was Kurrie.
currie_the nest_just a beak

Kurrie spend a lot of time asking Mum and Dad for something to eat.
currie_asking for food_with mum

I wonder what the parent is thinking.
currie_asking for food

As Kurrie is growing, now it’s standing up and stretching.
currie_standing on the edge

All the time keeping an eye out for the next snack
currie_standing on the edge_inside

Or stretching out as far as you can
currie_leaning out

The parents are constantly bringing Kurrie food. A growing baby needs lots of nourishment.
currie_asking for food_again

Here, Kurrie gets a bit of food from the parent.
currie_getting food

A bit about Kurrie.

Kurrie is a Pied Currawong. Currawongs live in most coastal areas of Eastern Australia. They live in the forest and have adapted to city life. I know when the weather is getting cooler in the mountains as the Currawongs come down from the mountains to hang around my place. They are around 48cm. Currawongs have a loud and distinctive call which is heard in the mornings, before roosting at night and sometimes before it rains.

Here is their call from Graeme Chapmans website
http://www.graemechapman.com.au/library/sounds.php?c=101&p=349