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
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.
April. An Autumn month where the hot days give way to warm days, a hint of rain and cool nights. Migratory birds stop off, some plants flower and the weather is great for getting into the garden.
My garden helpers. Well maybe not all the time but they can help out with the insect control. They are constantly digging somewhere.
The end of March saw floods around the region and as a result, the floodwaters that entered the ocean caused the beaches to become foamy wonders. Here is a selection of the water at Sharpes Beach near Ballina.
I love the structural shapes in cacti
Some cacti were flowering
Other flowers bloomed in their own showy way. The camellias were beautiful this year.
Other flowers were just as spectacular
The Hibiscus is one of my favourites
The deep red of the Dahlia is stunning
The bees are loving the Pentas.
The fungi were everywhere in March but now just the few last fungi are popping up here and there. This is a wonderful pink fungi.
It looks almost planetary from the top don’t you think?
On a young eucalypt I found this amazing growth which I was informed is called Witches Broom. The ants seem to enjoy scurrying over it.
I have had a visitor in my house since early this year. She has been moving from room to room but has moved into the laundry. She is the biggest Huntsman Spider I have ever seen. When she stretches her legs she has a 16cm span. How big is your hand?
One day out in the garden, I dug out some old plants and also dug out a spider. At first I thought it was a Funnel Web Spider but it was a Mouse Spider. Both species of spider are quite venomous. It was too fussed about being disturbed.
The Line Blue Butterfly stopped for a rest on the hanging pot support.
The Eastern Yellow Robins have been zooming around the garden chasing one another. The female Robin sat on the bush just outside of the window. I think she was looking in the window.
The Yellow-faced Honeyeaters have returned for the winter.
The Plumed Whistling-Ducks have also come to rest for a while. I found a large flock in Waterview Heights, a outer suburb of Grafton. They were walking up and down the edge of a dam, chatting among themselves.
The ever present Kookaburra is not far away when I am digging in the garden, either sitting in a tree or like this bloke, on a fence post.
That was a bit of Bushboys World in April. Hope you liked stopping by.
The Autumn breezes are just right for kites
An Australian Landscape – looking towards the Comboyne Plateau
A Lion from London
The iconic Australian bird the Kookaburra
Spring has begun and is almost over so I better get going and post some of my world in spring so far. There has been a lot happening, too many photos to sort through and making time to write, sort, edit and get it out!!!!
My old friend a few properties down the street is no longer able to care for himself and has gone into a care facility. His garden has been a source of inspiration and his help has made my garden a better place. He was always coming with bulbs, seeds or cuttings some of which have survived the dry periods and some just reappear much to my amazement.
This Iris was one of the first things I saw as I visited him before he left. A stunning splash of purple.
Of course it attracted the native stingless bees
The Grevilleas begin to bud at the start of spring. They don’t look as spectacular as the flowers but have a certain furry interest……
….and then they bloom into the most fantastic flower displaying many hues and colours.
The Honey Gem attracts so many birds to my garden but when you look closely you find some of the smaller creatures in my garden.
Throughout the bush around my place, the yellows and oranges of the Jacksonias splash colour into the bush.
I love the tiny native flowers that appear throughout the bush. This tiny yellow flower is about 10mm in diameter.
Another tiny native that has the most hairy leaves.
I am amazed that the lichen has regenerated from what looked like a dead blob in the grass. A small amount of rain bought it to life.
This is part of my “front lawn” I don’t have much grass and what is here is native grasses. I rarely cut the grass as there are so many tiny flowers that either grow at ground level or are on small stalks. This moss has gone to seed or is it the flowers?
Come spring everyone wakes up. Some like to prowl around the garden and “back yard” looking for things to eat. This bloke was looking for my chooks eggs!!!
One day coming home from town, there was a raucous noise and the sky suddenly was dotted with a huge flock of Yellow-tailed Black Cockatoos. This year there has seemed to be lots of them around. Sometimes in large flock or in just a few, screeching as they wheel about the sky.
I spent ages by the side of the road watching the Yellow-tailed Black Cockatoos argue of the best perch and change trees to find something to eat. Their aerobatics are superb don’t you think?
I am the boss of this tree and can see for kilometers.
Ahh….there is nothing as good as a pine cone.
Heralding in the morning, Kookaburras fill the air with their call. I love the bit of blue on their wings.
The beautiful call of the Grey Shrike Thrush is such a pleasant change from the usual suspects, Friarbirds, Blue-faced Honeyeaters and Ravens.
At my besties, the Emerald doves pop in for a quick drink from the bird bath. THe shimmer of green is eye-catching as they move through the bush.
A rare visitor to my road were these Crimson Rosellas. The bloke up the road put out feed for his horses and a flock of Rosellas dropped in for lunch.
Their colours are very striking. The red can be seen from a distance s they jumped about among the horses.
On a walk up the road, I found a Blue-faced Honeyeaters nest. As I was watching it became change over time.
A keen eye was kept on me before he settled onto the nest.
The best part was the Rainbow Bee Eaters as they swooped around. I played around with my photo program to see if I could get a different effect.
Thanks for hanging out with me for a while.
It seems like ages since I had time to sit down and look through the photos I have taken over the past few weeks. Some of these are from the end of February as I decided to just do the butterflies. I took a lot of butterfly photos in February and since then, have even taken more. I was asked about taking butterfly photos and had to say that out of twenty or so photos, there is usually only a couple that are ok.
This blog hasn’t any butterflies but has some other insects that I came across when walking around the garden or other people’s gardens. I was getting buzzed by this black insect. It wouldn’t go away but finally tuckered itself out and sat on a leaf.
I also spend a bit of time chasing bees around gardens. Coming in for a landing with rear legs full of pollen.
It took a bit of wrangling to get the caterpillar a bit angry to expose his red antennae while holding the camera in one hand and keeping the spikes on the bush lemon at bay as well.
Always have a close look inside of flowers. You never know who you may find!
I love these little orchid flowers. They grow on long stalks and this year have been flowering all the time.
The tiny Native Wisteria flowers are so perfect as they gradually open along the stem giving a blush of colour throughout the garden.
One of the old cottage style Hibiscus flowers. One of the original plants over thirty years old in my besties garden.
I found hundreds of small flowers growing on the breakwall at Ballina.
The Pink Bloodwoods were covered in blossoms, with bees buzzing about making a bit of a racket.
I was walking through the bush at my place when I came across a small shrub covered in white flowers. I haven’t seen this plant in flower before. It is quite pretty isn’t it?
Here are the flowers up close. Can anyone tell me the name of the shrub please?
I love the Tiger Lillies when they bloom, adding a splash of colour through the garden.
While we endured six months of no rain towards the end of last year, my favourite Honey Gem Grevillea suffered with the lack of water and still hasn’t flowered as strongly as it has in the past. Luckily the Pink Euodia has stepped up for the birds with bunches of flowers covering it, attracting so many birds. The Rainbow Lorikeets did their usual antics, hanging upside down to get a snack.
The Little Friarbirds kept an eye on the lorikeets when they popped in for lunch.
This is the first time I have seen the Scaly-breasted Lorikeets at my place. They only stayed for a couple of days.
The Musk Lorikeets returned to feast on the Euodias bounty.
They are so striking with their red heads, cheeks and beak
I really love the smallest of Australia’s Honeyeaters, the Scarlett Honeyeater. They can sit on top of the blossoms and not even bend the boughs at all.
They really are like “tiny red jewels” among the foliage around the garden.
One rainy day, I heard some disgruntled squawks and found some less that appreciative Rainbow Lorikeets sitting in the rain.
As always, the Kookaburra kept an eye out for any small creature or insect to wander across the grass. I was going to say lawn but that would be stretching the truth a long way.
The Galahs in the reserve behind the beach at Ballina found the Casuarina nuts irresistible.
Down at the water’s edge, a Seagull looked wistfully out to sea.
The Seagull kept an eye on us in case we had some chips.
Some birds have shown their funny side. I wonder if this is why this one is called a Drongo.
The Wedged-tailed Eagle is the biggest bird. I spotted one down by the side of the road ripping into a Wallaby road kill while it’s mate and the young one sat in a nearby tree. I didn’t notice them until one glided off the branch and into the forest leaving the young one. It sat there for a while until it too flew off. Such magnificent birds.
Well it’s time to kick back and relax. If anyone knows the names of any of the flowers or insects in this blog, please let me know. Thanks
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.
A couple of time over the past week I have been at the beach. It was very overcast and not all that inviting but usually there is something on the beach that gets my attention. I would have loved to photograph the kangaroos on the beach but high on the headland would have to do.
There’s something about the water, sand and light that I see but can’t quite get what I want on a photo.
A rock full of molluscs always attracts attention.
While eating lunch, a Kookaburra came over to closely check us out.
The Emerald Dove is so funny. Just walks up the garden path to discover what’s in and around things, sometimes to get a drink out of a saucer under a pot plant.
The Black-chinned Honeyeaters were ever so cute when they had a washing session.
The Satin Bowerbird was very vocal while perched above the dam.
THe rain has been a blessing, bushes started to flower. The Chinaman’s Hat is a bit rude….I think I have been flipped off by a flower
I love finding insects and spiders in flowers especially when they are so small that you often miss seeing them as you walk by.
The rain also bought out some interesting fungi. Everyone knows how much I love fungi. This fungi blog is full of them. I have never seen a cup-shaped fungi before.
And it was so white.
See you next time.
Writing Down The Bones
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