CBWC: Close Ups
November has been quite a month. I managed to get away for a week and a half, part of October and the beginning of November, to Tasmania where I experienced fresh air, so many different sights and managed to relax. I am still working on a post of my Tasmanian adventure. I have already shared a couple of photos in some of the photo challenges.
Unfortunately I came back to the heavy smoky atmosphere which has made it quite difficult to relax or feel calm. The constant smoke has affected my lungs, a bit of a “smokers cough” and my eyes are quite sore at times. Be assured I am safe and will remain so. I have repacked my car with some of my “treasures” and am ready to go when I have to. I shan’t dwell on this part of my life but there will be touches along the way in This is November.
This isn’t huge but you may like to make yourself comfortable, settle back and let’s go…..
Most of my sunrises are like this through the smoke
I had to get out and see where the fires were to the west. Took a bit of a detour to Cangi. You cross this wooden bridge over the Mann River.
The water levels are quite low. It is still a pretty place to stop and contemplate the world.
I was surprised to see quite a few small fish
There must be bigger fish in the Mann otherwise this Pied Cormorant is just hanging about enjoying the ambience.
I watched the White-faced Heron stalking among the rocks. He did eventually catch a small fish which was quickly gobbled down.
I think he may have followed me home. I saw him sitting in a tree in the garden.
I have a family of Laughing Kookaburras who are around the garden on a regular basis. This fella liked to show his tail feathers off.
The older Kookaburra is showing his age now.
I have an old swimming pool which is a bit of a frog pond. The evaporation is taking the water so the frogs are getting snapped up.
Once lunch has been consumed, it’s off to sit in an old gum tree.
How hot has it been in November?
The young King Parrot liked to sit in the shade of the verandah and let a cool breeze get through his feathers. He also asked for a drink and a snack with an enquiring face.
Some days there was a queue to get a drink and a quick splash at the bird bath. A White-throated Honeyeater makes a King Parrot wait her turn.
The Satin Bowerbird found a water pot on the ground where the Brush Tailed Possums and Wallabies drink.
At my besties place sometimes the bird bath gets quite crowded
Scaly-breasted Lorikeets and Rainbow Lorikeets often squabble over whose turn it is.
The “just out of the bath” is not a good look for a Scaly-breasted Lorikeet.
Meanwhile, a Olive-backed Oriel was keeping an eye on what was going on.
The Crested Pigeon really loved sitting on the shovel handle.
A rare visitor to my besties garden is an Australasian Pipit. He walked among the grasses looking for insects.
I don’t think this Noisy Friarbird wanted his photo taken
There may not be much water around but the dragonflies are flitting about the garden.
I love a close up
One of my pot plants, a Calathea has small delicate flowers.
The bees were everywhere on the Eucalypt flowers down at the river at Cangi.
Another plant my friend Geoff gave me has flowered. a wonderful Day Lily.
The Stingless Native Bees love it too.
Look at the well filled pollen sacs on these tiny bees.
One of the almost daily occurrences are the helicopters going to the nearby Clarence River to fill the water buckets. Sometimes they fly over my house. That is smoke not cloud. The fires are not near my place.
Well the sun is setting so it’s almost time to go.
The solar lights have come on in the garden.
and our Moon is bright overhead.
I hope you had a lovely time wandering through my world. We must do it again sometime.
PS Yesterday the fires jumped the highway and are at Cangi today. This does not bode well for me as westerly winds will eventually send the fire towards my place. Cangi is around 25kms from here. Hopefully that old wooden bridge will be OK. The Rural Fire Service has the fire under control at the moment.
Also included in Su’s The Changing Seasons Do drop by and see the wonderful posts over at Su’s place
Paula’s Pick a Word in September
This month Paula has supplied some words that are a lot easier than the previous Pick a Word photo challenges. No you aren’t losing your edge.
K’Lee and Dales Cosmic Photo Challenge: the sharpest image
To find the sharpest image it’s all in the eye
Welcome to my world in June. Not an abundance of photos this time but I do recommend getting comfortable. June was the month where my bestie sold her 103 year old farmhouse in a Rain-forest, where a lot of bird bath and bird photos came from, and moved into her new place which is similar to my climate. It is a newish house but has a bird bath and a great bird attracting garden. So far we have identified 38 birds, some are in this post. As you can see I have been a bit busy helping move house.
The house is still in a rural setting.
This is my first attempt at photographing Dandelion seed heads.
One afternoon the sky became fierce looking. Quite an angry face looking out isn’t it?
The early morning at my place walking through the Blady Grass. It was very dry in the previous months. Green shoots struggled to grow among the dry brown grass.
This native plant is growing in the middle of a paddock. The Autumn saw the stalk covered in white flowers. I hope the seeds have spread and not harvested by ants.
June is the month for the Lismore, a town nearby, Lantern Parade. I didn’t get many good parade photos. There were a number of Orchid lanterns hanging in the trees in the park where the show and fireworks took place.
The fireworks were quite spectacular.
While my bestie was moving house, I was given some, OK a lot, of plants to look after. The Kalenchoe loved being in my sun room and has put on a wonderful display of flowers.
Winter has also brought some other visitors into the house. I usually have native rodents come into the warmth. I have a trap to catch them and then they get taken back into the bush. This time I have had a House Mouse or two in the pantry. This little fat one, I suspect to be a pregnant female, was relocated up the road.
This is the big section of birds for the month of June
The little Silvereyes have really taken to the hanging pot bird bath and drinking place.
The other bigger birds prefer to use this bird bath. A female or juvenile Satin Bowerbird was chatting to someone nearby.
A Yellow-faced Honeyeater takes a drink.
A Yellow-faced Honeyeater at my besties has claimed this branch of a tree.
There has been quite a number of Yellow-rumped Thornbills around my garden
A very cute looking Jackie Winter enjoyed the morning sun on the fence.
While we were walking along a road, we came across a small flock of Variegated Fairy Wrens darting in the grass beside the road. A young one made an appearance on a nearby tree.
Of course I couldn’t let a post go past without my favourite, an Eastern Yellow Robin. Sadly we had to leave Bobbin behind so maybe this one at my place will be the the new substitute. I haven’t found the right name yet. Any suggestions?
One afternoon a small flock of Red-browed Firetails came looking for grass seeds in the front garden.
A young Lewins Honeyeater found a great lookout atop a red flowering Eucalypt.
The Rainbow Lorikeets came for the Eucalypt flowers too.
A Rufous Whistler singing an early morning song
It was lovely to have a welcome to the new place with a number of Welcome Swallows who zoom around the verandahs and sit on the fence to do their laundry.
Another bloke who likes to sit on the fence to survey the lawn for insects is the Restless Flycatcher. They make the most amazing sound. I tried to make a video but it wasn’t the best sound quality.
An Eastern Rosella wanted to see what we were doing in the new garden.
At my place, a number of Noisy Miners were carrying on. They didn’t like the Kookaburra being too close to their nests.
I thought it was going to be a cold night after finding a Kookaburra family cosying up for the night in the late evening.
A Pacific Black Duck showing a flash of turquoise as it paddled on the creek.
A young Straw-necked Ibis didn’t want me to take its photo as it strolled in a nearby paddock.
This bloke didn’t seem to mind though.
The Sacred Ibis look wonderful as they wheel about in the sky
A Common Tern was fishing down by the estuary. Gliding along and then suddemly plumetting into the water. I didn’t see it catch a fish though.
The Moon and a plane.
Well the sun is almost setting. Thanks for joining me in This is June
Hope to see you next month
The word prompt from Debbie at Travel With Intent: Where
Where have these photos been taken?
From my desk in the office through the glass door
A chook often comes to see what I am doing
A Noisy Friarbird looking in the door
The Kookaburra heard me move I think
A Brush-tailed Possum found a snack
A tiny Spotted Pardalote investigating for insects
The Rose Robin was tweeting away
Sometimes a Huntsman Spider will find insects hovering around the computer screen
Cee’s Black and White Photo Challenge: Heads or Facial Features
A Blue-faced Honeyeater enjoying some lunch
A Bush Stone Curlew was not impressed with me waking it up
Getting up close and personal with a Kookaburra
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.
On a bit of a chilly day the Cormorants were a bit sleepy in Ballina.
So were the Pelicans
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.
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.
A Figbird sits high on a branch keeping an eye on the goings on in the garden.
The Laughing Kookaburra was on the other side of the garden.
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.
The Eastern Whipbird sends his call down the gully This is what a whip bird sounds like here
The Pied Currawong was always around the garden.
This branch is a favourite sitting spot in the garden.
The Pied Currawong is sitting on the eggs in the nest at my besties place.
The Noisy Friarbird on the famous sitting branch
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
The Yellow-faced Honeyeater was wondering what the fuss was all about.
Check out my pink feet said the White Headed Pigeon.
The King Parrot having a snack of wattle seeds.
The Eastern Rosella high in the old Fig Tree wondering what I am doing.
The Olive-backed Oriel took his turn in the bird bath.
There was a Rainbow Lorikeet queue at the bird bath.
“Hey Stan……are you in there?”
“What do you want?”
Well that’s the end of This is October. I hope you got through the Four Parts.
So many great blogs have already contributed to the Fun Foto Challenge: Letter L
My search found some “L” birds for your enjoyment
A Little Friarbird wondering what’s going on over there
Lewins Honeyeater feeling rather proud of himself
Little Wattlebirds “Oh come now Dave…..turn around”
The lovely little Leaden Flycatcher
Early morning, the Laughing Kookaburra has always something to say
It may be Winter, but here, it is the time when birds drop in on their way north to build their strength for the next part of their journey, or stay for the winter in the warm days on the North Coast. The nights can get cold but the days are usually in the low 20’s C with the warmth of sunshine and the number of plants that flower in late Autumn and Winter makes it a good place to stop off. This is not a complete record of birds as there have been birds who I haven’t managed to get in my lens plus there has been some who have just been to fast for me to photograph. Yes I have quite a number of photos of empty branches!!!
This first gallery of photos are the birds from my place.
The White-throated Honeyeaters arrive in the morning and in the afternoon with their chirp chirp chirp as they set about diving into the birdbath or pool to have their bath.
The Yellow-faced Honeyeaters arrive from down south, some stay while others in the flock fly further north.
The Blue-faced Honeyeaters come and go all year depending on what food is available. The Honey Gem Grevillea has finally started to flower after a long dry hot Summer. Look at the pollen dust on his head.
The little Eastern Spinebills are here with the distinctive clicking of their wings as they zip around the garden and their calls echoing in the gullies.
You can judge their size by comparing with the Blue-faced Honeyeater and Grevillea flower above. They really stretch to reach the blossoms at times.
Their plumage is quite pretty don’t you think?
I don’t include many photos of the female Golden Whistler but this one is so cute. They are around the place all year round with their repetitive call which can sound like a squeaky wheel, at times up to twenty single notes.
They also like to land on the side of trees and have a look around.
As do the White-throated Treecreepers who just hop up and down the trees looking for insects under the bark. They have a similar call to the Yellow Robins but not as persistent.
They also like to defy gravity as the give the trees a very thorough checking over.
The tiny Red-backed Fairy Wrens like to explore the lower parts of the forest eating grass seeds and insects foraging among the grass stalks. The Jenny Wren has good camouflage.
The Silvereyes are migrants who stop for a few weeks to gather their strength for their next leg of their journey north.
They are another of the tiny birds around here.
The Red-browed Firetails are another constant visitor to the bush as they move about in small flocks looking for grass seeds. This is a young one as the red brow isn’t as prominent as the adults.
The tiny Striated Thornbills are always around the garden and in the gullies around the house.
They love the birdbath.
Someone who I haven’t seen for quite a while has turned up this month and has been around the garden early in the morning and in the gullies during the day. The Spotted Pardalote digs a tunnel in the side of the gully to make it’s nest. They are so pretty aren’t they?
I think this one saw me as I snuck along the verandah for a better photo.
They can be quite vocal too.
The sounds of Kookaburras signal the start and end of every day. There are about three families that live in the bush around the house and sometimes the cacophony of up to five or six Kookaburras can be quite deafening.
After I took this photo I noticed that there was another two sitting nearby in separate trees. All of a sudden they all flew off into the forest disappearing among the trees.
This next gallery are from my besties place.
The Lewins Honeyeater is the boss of my besties garden. They swoop on most other birds that dares to come into the garden. The Lewins at my place aren’t as bossy.
Can you spot the Varied Triller?
The Grey Fantails are always doing their acrobatic flying around the place catching insects on the wing. A very serious looking bird.
The Golden Whistler is always around the garden and nearby rainforest singing its lovely song.
My besties place is surrounded by rainforest so she has more doves and pigeons than I do at my place. The White-headed Pigeon has a deep sounding whoomp whoomp call. They also fly about in large flocks.
The Brown Pigeon didn’t want its photo taken.
There is always up to ten bar-shouldered Doves foraging on the ground in the garden looking for pecans that have fallen from the tree.
The Whipbirds also enjoy foraging among the leaves for pecans.
While high in the trees the Figbirds look for seeds as well as pecans. This female Figbird found the seeds of an Umbrella Tree.
The male Figbird was more interested in pecans.
The Green Catbird is also interested in pecans. Not long after this photo was taken, so was the pecan.
Another recipient of the fallen pecans is the large Brush Turkey. His strong beak breaks open the pecans and often leaves small pieces behind for the other birds to eat. This one we call Brendan who has taken over the garden and has a mound nest almost one meter tall in the front garden. One day I’ll try to get a photo of Brendan and his mound.
The most exciting discovery was finding a Regent Bowerbird just on the edge of the garden late one afternoon. I only managed to get a couple of bad photos but had to share in my excitement.
We went to Byron Bay one day to shop as we haven’t been for ages and Winter is a good time as the number of tourists is halved at least. The Golden Pendas are in flower and the Rainbow Lorikeets were having a great time screeching at each other.
And of course there are always chooks foraging around both our gardens.
That is a snapshot of some of the birds around here in June. My June photo round-up probably won’t have any birds this year. Hopefully I’ll get to that by next week.