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

Prolific

The Daily Post word prompt: Prolific

A flock of Cormorants skim the Clarence River one foggy morning
180419_blog challenge_prolific_cormorants

The design on a glass bowl
180419_blog challenge_prolific_glass bowl

Lilli Pilli berries and leaves scatter the ground after a storm
180419_blog challenge_prolific_lilli pilli berries_leaves

The flowers open on a Bangalow Palm this morning
180419_blog challenge_prolific_palm flowers

Once the bird bath gets prolific, someone has to leave
180419_blog challenge_prolific_rainbow lorikeets

This is October: Part Four

Of course Part Four would have to be the birds of October.

On the Queensland expedition we came across a huge flock of Cormorants and Pelicans on the edge of Somerset Dam.
birds_named_somerset dam qld_oct 2017

On a bit of a chilly day the Cormorants were a bit sleepy in Ballina.
cormorants sleeping_named_ballina_oct 2017

So were the Pelicans
pelicans sleeping_named_ballina_oct 2017

The Satin Bowerbird has been busy collecting his blue bits and pieces to decorate his Bower. This is the fifth year this Bower has been used in the bush at my place.
bowerbird bower_named_home_oct 2017

Of course who could forget Brendan the Bush Turkey. Here he is on his mound he has built for the females to lay their eggs in. The mound is about 2 meters tall. Brendan does a great job of raking the leaves.
brendan_mound_named_binna burra_oct 2017

A Figbird sits high on a branch keeping an eye on the goings on in the garden.
figbird_named_home_oct 2017

The Laughing Kookaburra was on the other side of the garden.
kookaburra_named_home_oct 2017 (2)

This bloke is more of a smiling Kookaburra don’t you think? He likes the sitting branch which is the most popular in the garden.
kookaburra_named_home_oct 2017

The Eastern Whipbird sends his call down the gully This is what a whip bird sounds like here
eastern whipbird_calling_named_binna burra_oct 2017

The Pied Currawong was always around the garden.
pied currawong91_named_home_oct 2017

This branch is a favourite sitting spot in the garden.
pied currawong02_named_home_oct 2017

The Pied Currawong is sitting on the eggs in the nest at my besties place.
pied currawong_nest_named_binna burra_oct 2017

The Noisy Friarbird on the famous sitting branch
noisy friarbird_named_home_oct 2017

Another stand off in the Honey Gem Grevillea between the Blue-faced Honeyeaters and the Noisy Friarbird. Check out the fight here from last year
blue faced honeyeaters_noisy friarbird_named_home_oct 2017

The Yellow-faced Honeyeater was wondering what the fuss was all about.
yellow faced honeyeater_named_home_oct 2017

Check out my pink feet said the White Headed Pigeon.
white headed pigeon_named_binna burra_oct 2017

The King Parrot having a snack of wattle seeds.
king parrot_named_home_oct 2017

The Eastern Rosella high in the old Fig Tree wondering what I am doing.
eastern rosella_named_binna burra_oct 2017

The Olive-backed Oriel took his turn in the bird bath.
olive backed oriel_bird bath_named_home_oct 2017

There was a Rainbow Lorikeet queue at the bird bath.
rainbow lorikeets_bird bath_named_home_oct 2017

“Hey Stan……are you in there?”
rainbow lorikeet_looking in bird bath_named_home_oct 2017

“What do you want?”
rainbow lorikeet_in bird bath_named_home_oct 2017

Well that’s the end of This is October. I hope you got through the Four Parts.

Week 31 – Empty Space

With a title like that for 52 weeks photo challenge  the sky’s the limit.

A little poem to start

eagle_poem_feb 2015

From the top of the pine tree the Yellow-tailed Black Cockatoo can see all the empty space around

pickaword_yellow-tailed-black-cockatoo

The Square-tailed Kite was being harassed by the Friarbird

square-tailed-kite_friarbird_named_home_nov-2016

Empty space abounds for the Jacky Winter perched on the old tree branch

jacky-winter_named_home_aug-2016

The Wedged-tailed Eagles getting away with their lunch. The one on the right has a Water Dragon trailing from its feet.

wedged tailed eagle09_named_ramornie_aug 2016

The Ibis soared in the sky.

ibis_lismore_named_dec 2015

The Black-shouldered Kite has the perfect perch to survey his surroundings.

black shouldered kite01_cowans pond_named_mar 2014

The Cormorant has many an empty space. One of my projects is to make some silhouettes of birds.

silhouette-blog_cormorant

Where could there be more empty space than…..weellll……Space

half moon_home_named_dec 2014

Silhouettes

A few years ago I looked at some of my photos and thought they would be good as silhouettes. I remade some of the best ones that I thought would be good to frame and sell at hand-made markets or other markets that abound here on the north coast of NSW. I only managed to get a stall at a couple of markets, no where near as many as I would have liked to attend, over the past year or two.

There has been some good sales and some where not one photo sold. Perhaps this year I may get to more markets as a stallholder and see if anyone enjoys my photos.

I don’t just convert from colour to black and white, in some cases I have taken the photo in monochrome, I actually trace around the photo to get a bit of a better definition. This takes time and sometimes I think I have spent more time than necessary but I enjoy doing the work.

This first silhouette is the photo that I took that started the process. I came home late in the afternoon and as I drove down the driveway, I disturbed the White-faced Heron on the dam who flew onto a branch near the house. I was just getting excited in capturing birds with my new digital camera, this was an ideal opportunity. The original photo late in the afternoon was almost in black and white with the sky blue and the Heron without any detail, just a dark image. The bark of the Yellow Stringybark was a challenge!!!

silhouette_blog_white-faced-heron

I have always like to outline of birds against the sky. An Osprey wheeling above the water looking for a fish provided a nice silhouette.

silhouette_blog_osprey

The Cormorant sitting on a branch on the edge of the dam also looking for a fish or yabbie obliged by sitting still for quite some time.

silhouette-blog_cormorant

The Yellow-tailed Black Cockatoos with their almost slow-motion flying as they flew overhead to their roost for the night were a delight to watch and photograph. The wing tips were hard to get right.

silhouette-blog_yellow-tailed-black-cockatoo

The New Holland Honeyeater sitting atop of a Banksia isn’t really a silhouette but the conversion into black and white was so striking that I decided to leave it as a monochrome. I included this one in my silhouette series as it is a popular photo at the markets.

silhouette-blog_wattlebird

Some birds are so distinctive in their shape, they are just right for silhouettes. Even a brightly coloured Rainbow Bee Eater is recognisable in black and white.

silhouette_blog_rainbow-bee-eater

As is a Spangled Drongo.

silhouette_blog_spangled-drongo

The Golden Whistler photo has taken me the most time to convert into a silhouette. I didn’t realise that when there are branches in the background that they are ever so slightly out of focus and need a lot of attention. I even left a small patch of the bright yellow colour on the neck as neither black or white to add a bit of definition of this wonderful small bird.

silhouette_blog_whistler

I have posted lots of brightly coloured birds on my blogs over the years. I hope you have enjoyed something different.

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

A bird or two and some small stuff

The world seems to be travelling at a fast pace and I have not been able to keep up!!! I looked back and see that I have put some photos on my blog in May and now it’s the end of June almost. I have so many photos to sort that I need to have a holiday just to get on top of everything.

It’s not that I haven’t done any travel over the past months as I have been to the Central Coast of NSW where the weather wasn’t all that condusive to taking photos or just roaming about.

This pigeon I have been calling a Top Knot Pigeon I now have discovered is a Crested Pigeon. It was wandering about in a park and just waddled over to where we were sitting and hunted under the table and seat for snacks.

crested pigeon01_named_gosford_june 2015

The marking on it’s feathers are rather striking and that red eye makes it look like it has had a hard night.

crested pigeon_close_named_gosford_june 2015

On the way home we stopped at Bellwood, between Nambucca Heads and Macksville, for a hot chocolate at a well know fast food chain who we discovered make one of the best hot chocolates. On the way back to the car, we looked across the Pacific Highway toward the river and there was a Cormorant “high-rise hotel” with around fifteen nests.

cormorant hotel_bellwood_named_june 2015

Judging by the open bills, it was hot work nest sitting.

cormorant01_bellwood_named_june 2015

Back home and it’s time to gather firewood. I enjoy this time of year when I can get into the bush, do a bit of bushcare and wander about my place looking for suitable logs for firewood. It is always fantastic to discover the plants, birds and insects that live with me.

The forest has a lot of these yellow flowers scattered about most of the year. They grow close to the ground sometimes I find a number of flowers close together.

yellow flower_named_home_june 2015

The Autumn flowers are spent but leave behind their little hairy holders where, I hope, the seeds have spread onto the forest floor.

flower stalk_named_home_june 2015

I love this vine. I was at the same location last weekend and this fruit has turned orange. I knew I should have taken a photo of it in its orange form. I don’t think it is edible.

fruit_vine_crop_named_home_june 2015

There are a few butterflies still fliting about the forest floor. I chased this one for a few minutes before it tired and sat on the log. I was grateful for the rest as well.

butterfly_crop_named_home_june 2015

There has been some small falls of rain through the month – .5 of a ml to 2.5mls, recorded in the rain gauge at the house which is on the ridge line. The seems to rain more down at the bottom of the property as all around the forest are fungi. This one was one of a few who were pushing their shiney gold caps through the leaf litter.

fungi01_named_home_june 2015

I love the wood orange fungus as it seems to be melted onto the bark of the fallen tree, tiny toes gripping onto the bark.

fungi_wood_named_home_june 2015

The strangest of all are this fungi which sends crooked fingers reaching from the ground.

fungi01_fingers_named_home_june 2015

I hope to have the photos sorted and ready for another blog soon. Thanks everyone for the feedback as well as letting me know what I have found. So if you know the names of anything in theis or any other of my blogs, please let me know ‘cos I love learning about our wonderful planet and it’s life.

An assortment found while travelling around

I have ben slack I will admit. Here is a collage of life that I have found. Some have no meaning and just are stuff that the world leaves lying around, or sitting or just being.

I went to the Bentley Blockade had a chat or two with the folk who were only too happy to chat, buts another story another time. Of course I have to go exploring, so Bentley is a good start and who knows where we will end up

This wonderful farm-house, just sitting there, neglected.

Image

While overhead, the clouds were just blowing up and drifting apart, ever-changing.

Image

On the way back to Lismore, the clouds in the east had a soft blush of colour which turned to storm clouds.

Image

The pansies were blooming bright colours making spots of joy in the usually, almost colourless autumn gardens.

Image

Everyone was enjoying the camellias, Lewins Honeyeaters were darting in and out and even the ants were traipsing all over the bush.

Image

The stamen look like they are wearing boxing gloves…no wonder the ant scarpered

Image

Of course someone had to shine. The Gerbera was the star of the garden.

Image

The Emerald Dove can’t seem to stop still for a second. I think it scooped stuff up while strutting around the courtyard.

Image

The little Eastern Yellow Robin was always darting about the foliage of the tree begonias.

Image

While overhead the Eastern Rosellas just chatted away, mostly to no-one in particular.

Image

The White Headed Pigeon took advantage of the last afternoon to have a last dip at the bird bath.

Image

Up the flag pole!! The  Butcher Bird thought the flag pole was a great place to scan the neighbourhood. As long as he looked up as well.

Image

The Brahminy Kite was on the prowl making birds scatter everywhere.

Image

Cormorants look very pretty with their wings folded. All that drip-drying seems to pay off.

Image

The Pelican didn’t seem to give a rats about anything.

Image

The Pied Oyster Catchers seemed unfazed by the Soldier Crabs who have just taken over whole of the little beach in a small bay.

Image

The Soldier Crabs were everywhere….always seemed to be on a mission to somewhere and back again, a bit of over there and a “Hey it’s Norm again” as business is done as a cluster ever moving, occaisionally stopping for a quick drink or to stuff a claw into their mouths possibly with a snack of some sort..

Image

They were so hard to get a good photo as they just scuttled away when you got close to them or they got close to me. Below is an artist’s impression of the Soldier Crabs

Image

The crabs knew someone was looking on at their antics. No one was fooled by the shades.

Image

The end of the day. The sun setting like an explosion of fire and colour.
The evil eyes are looking….beguiling you into the mouth of fire.

Image

After the sun has set, it is sometimes just as beautiful. The purples, deep blues and almost a russet flow down into yellow with a lone house light in the distance.

Image

When darkness sets in, the little Pademelons come scrounging around the chook yard, hoping to snuffle up some grain the chooks left behind. That’s why this bloke has a smudge on his nose.

Image

I love our Moon. Sometimes the Moon just shines when full. Goodnight.

Image

 

 

Back roads and the beach

I enjoy travelling on the back roads where you can discover all sorts of things, plus it’s a great way to find where “that road” goes, which often is a surprise. Some roads are dead ends, some are gravel and some lead to the beach, so lets see what I found recently. The last time I went to the beach everyone enjoyed that day. Seat belts on and off we go.

One of the main things you have to do is take notice of the road safety signs, even if it does mean you have to be aware of Koalas on bikes.

Image

One photo I wanted to take was one of cattle and Cattle Egrets. Luckily it was a rainy day so there were some cattle just resting with egrets hanging around. Just love the one which poked its head up.

Image

At one stop, a cow decided to come over and check out what I was doing, mooing very loudly, until I pointed the camera at her.

Image

There are always flowers. These are quite spectacular.

Image

A lone Zinnia looking quite beautiful.

Image

On the track through the dunes where a Dunecare group planted a lot of plants, which have stabilised the dunes, was a Marengo which have the most fantastic leaves, The wind was blowing so the full leaf was hard to capture so a close-up was just as good.

Image

Once down on the sand, trying to stay out of the sand blasting, I noticed that there was a Pelican floating around on the current.

Image

The Pelican was soon joined by lots of seagulls

Image

And then there were Terns speeding along the breakwall, flying up high and then dropping out of the sky into the water as well.

Image

The Terns seemed to go ever so high into the sky

Image

Before plunging into the water. I just couldn’t time it right to get the entry but have lots of photos of splashes.

Image

Next a flock of Cormorants arrived to help to herd the fish into the shallow water.

Image

And everyone took advantage of the Cormorants fishing skills.

Image

In this photo, I think the Tern is a Little Tern in the bottom right.

Image

So after a while the Pelican wasn’t alone.

Image

On the drive home, the Moon looked very surreal.

Image

Thanks for taking the drive with me along the back roads in the rain and down to the beach.

Flowers Birds Bugs and Snakes

This month has been quite a month of contrasts. I have been sitting here wondering where my rain has gone when all around rain has fallen. I am away and have rain and a diversity of stuff, whereas at home, the dryness has seen quite a few birds desert the property for better pickings. But still there are the ones who stick around for most of the year with an occasional drop in by a stranger.

This is a look back at the month and some of the discoveries that I have made as I wander about. Hope you enjoy this adventure walk around with me.

I have been peeking into flowers again. I love hippeastrums colours

Image

A vine that trails over a fence has flowered this year the first time for quite a while. I don’t know what it is but it has an interesting shape inside.

Image

The Crocus flowers have attracted the attention of the native bees who arrive in numbers. I like the one at the top of the photo, throwing a shadow on the petal, who is buzzing in at speed as though it was a bit late.

Image

As it seems we have moved onto the bees and bugs, we better continue. The Blue Banded Bees have been quite busy at my place and my besties. This bloke was very intent on the flowers.

Image

The Cassia flowers have been quite spectacular this year with the pendants of yellow dripping from the tree. The big bee who dropped in to do a bit of gathering would have been surprised with the thank you pat on the back from the flower.

Image

No matter the weather, there is always dragonfly flitting about or stopping to eye-ball what ever I am doing.

Image

One night, there was a constant high-pitched chirping from a cicada inside. After a bit of searching I found it hiding behind the curtain.

Image

While outside, a caterpillar was changing location to set up a better snoozing spot in its cocoon.

Image

This moth is always watching or so it hopes in order that’s what predators will think so it won’t end up as dinner.

Image

There has been some birds around. The Peaceful Doves are always around as they know in the afternoons I give the chooks some grains.

Image

The new comer to my garden was a Bar Shouldered Dove who was cooing from the bush for a few days before I saw him.

Image

It has been quite hot and the Spangled Drongo just sat in the shade of the tree hoping to catch a breeze.

Image

But in my besties garden, the Red Browed Finches has a great place to meet have a chat, a  bath and a drink.

Image

The Cormorant found a good perch above the dam to keep an eye out for fish and to dry off in the sun.

Image

At night the Flying Foxes came for the flowers of the Pink Bloodwood. Can you count the eyes peering out from the dark as they hang from the palm tree?

Image

It has been a year for snakes big and small. At my besties I saw a carpet snake high up in the mango tree. A knot of snake on a small branch.

Image

Whereas at my place late one night I had to rescue a chook from the deadly coils. A bit of a drive up the road in the morning to a safe place, I let it out of the bag. It looked bigger in the night.

Image

But it gave a cheeky grin and slithered off.

Image

The little Green Tree Snake was quite happy to scurry away at speed.

Image

We all enjoy a walk along the beach. Even an Osprey has to do it every now and then.

Image

Well like the tired old dog in Murwillumbah, it’s time to start the truck and head on home.

Image

Did you like a walk through my January?

brian