The Photo a Day Challenge from Maria at citySonnet: Starts With G
Grasshoppers, that’s who
The Photo a Day Challenge from Maria at citySonnet: Starts With G
Grasshoppers, that’s who
Oh dear, another month of photos that is too big. I think I should do a week at a time. I haven’t included the photos from the other posts, just a couple I think. It was a weird month. The days were the usual February hot to very hot days with the rain finally appearing at the end of February.
Perhaps, as usual, a cup of tea or a drink of choice, get comfy and I hope you get to the end without nodding off.
This time I am starting off with insects so those who have an aversion to spiders, moths or flies get your scrolling finger ready to zip past some fantastic photos lol
I found a tiny hairy caterpillar who looked so unusual. Yes I did get a bit close with the lens and the centre section did get a bit squashed by the lens
I surprised a small spider. She ran out to defend her egg nest
Even a hornet has to have a drink on a hot day
One of the more unusual grasshoppers I have at my place
These flies like to bite. The bit of the proboscis that is hanging down has a spike sheathed inside. The other dagger like thing is the antennae. The angle makes them look fierce.
You can see why the fly is angry all the time and wants to bite. A bit of baldness can make anyone cross.
With all the places in the garden to hatch out, these cicadas chose the same leaf
The Line Blue Butterflies had a monopoly in some parts of the garden. This tiny one found a quiet place to sit for a while
A moth, we call a tiger moth, really loved the scent of the Murraya flowers
Looking at a Crow Eggfly Butterfly who was looking at me
This Dragonfly has been in a mud puddle I think
Such a dainty tiny Dragonfly
The fig tree has so many figs which the birds love
Isn’t this Wood Fungus lovely
An old fashioned Hibiscus flower. This is one of the smallest Hibiscus flowers in the garden.
The Leopard Lillies liked the hot weather
So did the Ginger flowers
The Lilli Pilli bush doesn’t flower that much but when it does isn’t it spectacular?
Onto Animals which includes a couple of Python photos so snake phobes get ready to whizz past some really beautiful photos
As it was hot, the Carpet Python came out from the roof space and stretched along the rafter. It must have been quite warm so close to the corrugated iron
When the weather was a bit cooler, the Python managed to knot up into a smallish ball. This is about 2 meters of snake all rolled up
When it was a too hot, the Python decided that Charlies little pond was a cool place to be. Charlie didn’t care and swam about the snake while the snake ignored Charlie thankfully.
Charlie also had another unwelcome visitor. How ugly are Cane Toads?
Enough of ugly, here is some cute. Early one morning, a couple of Yellow-footed Antechinus were hopping around the verandah
When I went into the shed, I disturbed some Lesser Long-eared Bats. Aren’t their little feet lovely?
We are now in the bird zone so those who have been rushing past the previous photos can relax now
A great way to spend part of a hot day is in one of the many bird baths scattered around the place. A Grey Fantail contemplating a plunge
A Variegated Fairy Wren checking out the mosaic bird bath
The little Thornbill jumped straight in, splashing about
A Red-browed Firetail Finch just dunked under to cool off
A Jenny Wren looked on from the safety of the bushes
A Spangled Drongo was looking for some grubs in the Poinciana tree after his dip in the bird bath
The Eastern Yellow Robin took his usual lookout on the garden chair to scan the garden for dinner
We wondered who was making a mess on the car doors early in the morning. I finally was able to catch the culprit – a Green Catbird
This White-headed Pigeon was on lookout at the bird bath while its young one had a drink of water
One morning there was a terrible sound in the garden. There were Ravens calling and flying about. I finally spotted a Channel-billed Cuckoo young who was being raised by the Ravens
The birds were all calling out, making a real noise in the garden. I finally spotted the culprit who set them off. A Pacific Baza was sitting in a tree. Nearby another two were calling as well. They bought their young one to check out the garden.
When I go outside I always look up as often a Wedged-tailed Eagle or two will be wheeling about looking for an unsuspecting snack
I think I was lucky to have everything just right to capture this spiders web. The Primrose flowers add a splash of colour
The door latch from the Cathedral in Grafton. It doesn’t look very worn so I don’t think it is the original but looked quite good enough to photograph
I loved the lighting in the loungeroom one night
Thanks for your staying power. Enjoy a sunset
This is just the one big photo blog. I hope you have time to scroll through. It started rather small at the start of December and just seemed to grow as stuff happened. I have included some of the skies that may have been in Beckys Square Sky photo challenge or missed out. I really enjoyed Beckys #SquareSky challenge. Perhaps you may need a pot of tea to get to the end!
Lets go. I love skinks and how they just move about on brick walls.
Come Summer and the Dragonflies are flitting about the garden.
I couldn’t find this Dragonfly at first when it disappeared into the garden.
Summer in Australia with the deafening cacophony of cicadas. When the tree you were in many years ago has gone, make do with anything to get out of your shell.
Brown Ringlets have wonderful “eyes” on their wings.
I was visited by an Assassin Bug who did a bit of fluff cleaning for me.
Mud Daubers make wonderful clay pots to raise their young. They lay an egg in the clay pot, they go about gathering spiders which they comatose for the grub to eat when it hatches.
I have been watching this one build a cone shape on the architrave of the office door.
Some mornings the chicken wire fence has lots of spider webs in the mesh.
What a fabulous green the grasshopper has which contrasts with the yellow of the Deities flower.
I love the Line Blue Butterflys antennae
The Bromiliad flower with a bonus spider shell.
The Stingless Native Bees loved the Day Lily flower.
After the rain, the Crocus flowered much to the delight of the Stingless Native Bees
They certainly have a laconic way of flying don’y they?
The red Dahlia is one of my favourite flowers.
The Tree Begonias supplied a splash of red in the garden too.
It was a great year for the Agapanthus flowers.
A tiny native flower with a fluffy centre.
Another lovely flower I was given from my friend Geoff.
A very pretty Rose in a friends garden.
I think this flower is an Egg and Bacon plant flower.
The Hibiscus flowers welcomed the rain in December.
A field of Daisys on the side of the road.
The Curry Bush had a great flowering last year as well
The storm season arrived a bit late last year but when it came, it was spectacular.
This sky was incredible
I love capturing the suns rays.
The palm leaf had shiny spots of water which glistened in the sunlight.
People must have thought I was mad walking around trying to get the sun in the right spot.
This sunset was amazing. The colours changed every minute.
It’s hard getting a sunrise photo when you live in a forest.
The Spangled Drongo was wondering what I was doing interrupting bath time.
It isn’t often I see a Peaceful Dove at the bird bath.
When White Ibis flocks glide overhead it is just magnificent.
A female Figbird or a young Figbird just getting his red mask.
One day he will look like his dad.
Check out the pants on the Channel-bill Cuckoo
They have a very serious looking bill don’t they?
Rainbow Lorikeets are quite raucous as they nibble about on the Lemon Scented Tea Tree.
I am so glad the Forest Kingfisher has returned this Summer to forage around the house.
An activities box outside of a Cafe in Toowoomba.
The Moon was just wonderful with the coloured rings on a cloudy night.
If pupils were white it could look like an eye.
Some people have said this photo has a Japanese feel about it. What do you think?
Thanks for dropping by
Part Two will be the animals, reptile, amphibians and insects I came across in October
I put out a bowl with water for animals that come around the house for drinks when the weather is warm. I found a frog in the bowl which needed to be rescued. I think it is a Common Eastern Froglet.
One morning we looked on the verandah and there was a Carpet Snake skin hanging from the rafter. It was over 2 meters long.
Isn’t the skin beautiful?
Brush-tailed Possums are coming into the shed. I surprised this one who has a mosquito on its nose.
I set the live trap as the Brush-tailed Possums are getting into the roof cavity. I heard a crash on the verandah and saw a mother Possum with a baby on her back so I set the trap off. I can’t believe I actually gave the piece of apple to the baby.
A Red-necked Wallaby enjoying the morning sun in front of the house.
When you are small and still in the pouch, you have to do some investigating when ever you can.
It was hard to find the grasshopper amongst the leaves.
The Bull Ants know when you are about. Time for a quick photo as they Bull Ants poured out from the nest, running away before they ran up my legs.
These lovely ant enjoyed walking about the plants looking for whatever ants look for.
The Wolf Spider and the Millipede inside escaping the rain.
Further up the wall a Huntsman observed the carry on below.
Looking among a timber stack, I disturbed a Huntsman Spider having a rest.
Look at the mouth of this butterfly.
The inside wings of a Ringed Xenica. The first time I have seen a Ringed Xenica on my place.
The outer wings of the Ringed Xenica are far more showy
The Native Stingless Bees get right inside of the Dietes to get the nectar or pollen.
This fly may look quite pretty but boy can they bite.
Just resting on a leaf before buzzing off to buzz around the house or just annoy people.
A dragonfly enjoying the sunshine.
Some dragonflies being “friendly”
Ready for Part Three?
I do seem to have a lot of favourite photos from August. I have done quite a hard cull. I hope you are able to get through all of this blog. It was a busier than usual month. The rain hasn’t come and the place is dry now. It is a pity the dam I use for around the garden leaked as it was full in Autumn and that would normally have seen me through Winter until the Spring storms arrive. Being so dry the number of birds are reduced but I have maintained the water points around the garden for the birds and animals. I almost feel like a bad parent, selecting the plants to water and hoping the others will hang in there until I start the pump and give the garden a good soaking.
Enough of the sob story and let’s get started with the things I found in August.
I just love the colour of this leaf.
Late one afternoon while I was searching for a new log to cut firewood, I went down to the water hole. This water hole has never dried even in some of the severe droughts in the 1990’s and 2000’s. Camera settings 1/320 F6.5 ISO 800
Driving about the property, mainly gathering firewood and pulling lantana out, I often come across a family of White-winged Choughs as they patrol the bush, walking about looking under leaves and bark for insects. It was good to see that this family group has grown from five to seven.
The wily Currawong was sitting in the Bottlebrush waiting for an unsuspecting small Honeyeater to drop in for a meal.
At the small paddock dam, in reality a wetland now, the Peaceful Dove was walking down the slope heading for a drink.
In one of the water points I have placed a stick so if a bird falls into the old drum, they have something to grab onto and get out. The Yellow-faced Honeyeaters like sitting on the stick after having a drink or plopping in the water for a bath.
The main sounds that were echoing through the bush in August were the calls of the Yellow-faced Honeyeaters. They loved feasting on the Bottlebrushes.
The Black-faced Cuckoo Shrike was surveying the scene at Modenville.
One morning the Bowerbird was eating the grass for breakfast. It had quite a number of beak-fulls before it flew off.
The Bowerbird looked stunning in the afternoon light.
I love having King Parrots around. Their whistle resounds through the bush.
A Restless Flycatcher dropped in for an afternoon.
The Superb Fairy Wrens were bustling about the garden at Modenville hardly sitting long enough for a photo.
The little Variegated Fairy Wren was very busy with his flock of females as they explored the garden at Binna Burra.
I wondered what had happened to my beautiful blooms on my Cyclamen and then I saw the culprit. It is almost like the caterpillar has a straw in its mouth.
I found this tiny “house” that an insect has constructed on the bark of a block of firewood I had cut. I have bought it home and hope to see what come out of this beautifully constructed nest.
I found this beetle marching with purpose along a log.
The Common Jezebals have been flying about the bush and garden for a few weeks. When they fly they have an intense stroboscopic pattern flashing of black and white. When the wings are flat you can see the predominately white side of the wings.
I love it when there is an unexpected spider on a flower or seed head as well as small grasshoppers and ants. The seed head is about the size of a 20 cent piece.
This is the rest of the spike
There is a lot of native flowers popping up this August. It was unseasonably very warm. A lovely circle of yellow flowers about the size of a 10 cent piece.
I called this flower a Buttercup but it’s probably not. The leaves are similar to Oxalis.
Look how hairy the leaves are and the flower has a lovely reddish brown centre.
The Egg and Bacon plant is growing on the top of the dam wall. The flowers are beautiful and yes the leaves are spiky. A great place for small birds to escape into.
I call this vine a Native Wisteria. It is also called False Sarsaparilla and a few other names. It looks lovely when the vine entwines with a wattle threading purple among the wattle flowers.
Scattered throughout the bush these little star shaped flowers are easy to miss as they are about ten millimeters across.
The Bottlebrush flower is photo-bombed by a Stingless Native Bee.
This Grevillea flower is called Lemon Daze.
Isn’t the inside of this flower interesting?
Love the colour of these flowers.
Pansys. Who doesn’t love smiling Pansy faces. The colours are spectacular.
The camera can’t catch the deep purple of these Pansys
One August afternoon the sunset was spectacular.
I love the effect of the hills and trees on the horizon.
One of my Canon Powershot camera setting is called “Creative”. It takes a number of photos with different setting. This one made the sun look explosive.
Looks like the sun has set so goodbye and thanks for stopping by.
I love this time of year. The warmth starts everything growing, flowers bloom in the garden, many birds arrive to spend the end of the year and life just abounds. It also gives me a chance to find things at my place, at my besties, in town and everywhere I am wandering.
This year, the Hippeastrums were spectacular. The red ones were full of life and colour. Remember the native bees? The other colours bloomed after the reds and I found this little grasshopper while I was admiring the flowers. The grasshopper was inside the flowers trumpet but tended to be camera shy and started to get away from the lens.
I have no idea what this bug is! Maybe a grasshopper? I was standing in the garden when it decided to walk onto my foot. This bloke wasn’t camera shy at all and kept walking towards me. Just after I took this photo, he jumped onto the camera.
On my besties place, a farm for more than one hundred years, I came across this concrete pier from a building long since gone. This is the only pier I have found, covered in moss, laying in what is now a young rainforest.
Also down among the leaf litter are the fungi. This one looks like it has been tied up by the grass.
There is lots of this type of fungi. It seems to grow on rotting wood especially bits of the fig trees which have tumbled from the big old trees, the remnants of the original Big Scrub rainforest.
Now back to my place. I have found a couple of this grass species throughout the bush. The stem has a lot of purple fruit which really catch the eye when walking in the bush. This plant is growing beside the track to the house.
I love Gerberas, don’t you? They come in so many colours adding a splash of colour to the garden.
Enough of bugs and plants. The Bar-shouldered Doves have taken to walking around the garden in the mornings, examining the bits of bark and grass to find their breakfast.
We went to Ballina and came across these fluffy plover chicks who were in constant movement as the walked across the field, closely followed by the parents. Yes I was a chicken and stayed on the other side of the road as the parents didn’t like me getting too close.
My besties birdbath is a constant source of photo opportunities. The Little Wattlebirds have become a fixture in the garden over the past 3 years. This one looks like it saw me hiding on the verandah.
This year the Jacarandas in Grafton were amazing. The large tree near the building where I work had an extra surprise this year. A Figbird pair decided to make their nest close to the building. Here is mum coming back to the nest to feed the young one. I think she saw me at the window don’t you?
But she soon settled down the sit on the nest among the Jacaranda blooms.
A few days later, the wind was blowing when dad turned up to give the little feller a snack, blowing the blossoms away allowing a sneak peak at the young one.
Then he took over the nest sitting duties.
Late in the evening at my besties, the Green Catbirds start making their strange calls from high among the trees.
Yes it is getting dark. The flowers in the garden still shine in the encroaching darkness.
Well the sun is setting, so I must say goodnight and a goodnight from the Kookaburra too.
See you next time. What did you enjoy the most, the bugs, the fungi, the flowers or the birds?
It’s been a while since I have shared some of my discoveries. The last was in Spring so here are the December discoveries. There has been an abundance of flowers since the rain started. Only a few mls here and there with one big storm that put water into the dam. Actually at the moment the sky has darkened and thunder is rumbling so maybe some rain for a Christmas present. Wouldn’t that be nice? Decembers discoveries are a mixed bag of flowers, birds and all sorts of things that have caught my eye. I hope you enjoy this bit of my December.
Lets start with some flowers. I love it when the garden just bursts into bloom after the first summer rain. The Agapanthus look a treat scattered throughout the garden. I have white ones
and blue Agapanthus.
The Bauhinia is a bit rambling but when the flowers are out it provides a splash of colour.
The Dietes border some gardens and are in clumps here and there. Only downside is the are taking over almost weed like.
The yellow Dietes is a favourite of the Satin Bowerbirds. They harvest the flowers as quick as they appear. This one has a bonus small grasshopper!
Native flowers are always around. This little yellow flower is about 5mms across.
The Black Bean flowers come in a range of yellows and oranges and reds.
The Grevillea flowers are yet to come back. The dry weather certainly decreased the flowers so the Friar birds make do with the Hibiscus flowers, even if you have to be upside-down to get a snack.
The fig tree had an abundance of fruit this year and the Fig Birds have been hanging around the garden since the start of winter. I love their calls which ring out around my place early in the morning and late in the afternoon.
The Kookaburra was hiding in the garden waiting for an unsuspecting insect or lizard.
This year, the Spangled Drongo stayed a bit longer than usual and I found their nest. It is well tied on to the branch.
One hot day, 40 degrees plus, many of the birds were quite thirsty and hot. I have a number of water points around the garden for the birds. You have seen the new bird bath but this is an old wheelbarrow that get drips off the roof where some birds like to drop in for a bit of a splash and drink. This poor Drongo was very hot.
He was joined by a Friarbird and they had a bit of a discussion who was allowed to drink here.
Once the rain started, all around fungi seemed to sprout up anywhere. This little puff-ball was in the middle of a small grassed area.
Whereas this fungi grew out from the exposed root of a tree.
I love dragonflies. They are always zooming around the garden, either here or at my besties. This one was high in a tree watching us remove some weeds in the paddock. Their wings are amazing don’t you think?
This small dragonfly was almost invisible on the ground.
On a hot day a Green Tree Snake went for a dip in the pool, which is a frog pond now. It had a hard time trying to get out and did panic a bit when we came outside. It found a place to hide in the skimmer box. I put some palm branches around it so the poor little bloke could get out easily.
On a walk to Killen Falls we came across the Sandpaper figs fruiting. They are rather fuzzy.
This one comes with a bonus grasshopper too.
The sunsets have been amazing. Here is a selection of just one sunset.
This one has a bit of blue as the sun set.
I love the sunset when it looks like the sky is on fire.
Well, it’s almost Christmas. I found this nativity scene in a market. It’s made of wood and is from Thailand. I am not particularly religious but I love things that are well made and interesting. The elephant is missing as he is under the Christmas tree.
My Christmas tree. This years theme is elephants. As you may have guessed, I collect elephants.
Unless I get inspired to write before the end of the year, have a great 2015 and I’ll “see” you next year.
I have had some new visitors to my garden over the past week or so. First of all, a Black-faced Cuckoo Shrike sat in the tree near me
and a while later, way over there, collecting small twigs for a nest I guess. It has been quite a while since I last saw a Black-faced Cuckoo Shrike around here.
The other new one arrived a few days ago….meet the White Cheeked Honeyeater
They are quite athletic when getting into the blossoms
No blossom is safe
The Little Friarbird arrived about the same time
The everyday things wanted to be discovered or rediscovered. The birds and flowers that are nearly always here at the same time most years seemed to attract my attention, perhaps it was the light or as with the Leaden Flycatcher, seemed to sit and pose for a while which is unusual for a bird who just loves to flit about the bushes and trees singing at every stop.
As usual the Noisy Friarbirds dominated this part of the yard as well. They have a never-ending flight between the Honey Gem out the front, and the Callistemon out the back, trying to stop all the other birds having a snack. They certainly love to swoop at the bushes to scare the other smaller birds. Or they will sit there trying to give the death stare to anyone who is anywhere within eye shot.
The poor little Scarlet Honeyeater is always on the look out when it grabs a quick snack before the bullies come back from their other bush protection flight.
But always get a good feed
Willie Wagtail managed to get a cicada and was banging it about the tree branch
Elsewhere around the place, things are looking good with just the right amount of rain to keep everything growing and flowering. I looked down the back and saw a lot of yellow flowers. I thought I had the Fireweed beaten and was a bit dismayed at seeing the many spots of yellow everywhere!!! Having a good look up close I was relieved to see it was a little native star-shaped yellow flower.
Sitting among the star-shaped flowers was this little one as well. Many of the native flowers here are very small, around 10 – 15 millimetres in diameter.
Some of the white flowers are just waiting to burst out.
While some are out enjoying the sunshine already
There are a few little yellow fluffy flowers that are more like Fireweed.
In the trees, the Spangled Drongos enjoy having their weird sounding conversations.
Which didn’t bother the King Parrots very much as they were more intent on seed hunting.
The Figbird was looking rather splendid as it hopped about the lower branches
Just looking about
I don’t think I have ever looked at one of the many blooms of the Agapanthus flower before
The little pink Grevillea flower is quite small and I don’t think any of the honeyeaters visit as most of the flowers are intact.
All over there has been a certain busyness which has even effected the insects. Some ants were marching up and down the wall
While a grasshopper thought that some of the indoor plants were worthy of investigation to ascertain their edibility
I guess anytime around here there is always a young Red-necked Wallaby. As I haven’t included at Joey shot for a while, here you go as I know a lot of you like these fluffy little blokes.
There’s been a bit happening around here hasn’t there…..
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