The Lens-Artists Challenge#171: Weird and Wonderful
I may have a few things that could be weird and wonderful. A slideshow may be best
Cee’s On the Hunt for Joy Challenge: Knoll your desk
Some things that have been found at my desk over the years.
What a month of differences. I had some good rainfalls in February but March became quite dry. The dam I use for watering the garden and use outside didn’t receive any run-off and is very low. I am in water conservation mode and back to watering the garden plants sparingly. The pot plants on the verandahs are getting the precious tank water. I have lost a number of my Begonias sadly. I have a number of plants of the same species and nothing has been lost altogether.
The coming of Autumn is usually a time to plant but as the same as last year, there isn’t the promise of rain and soil moisture. I have a number of plants that are now going to re-potted into bigger pots. The best thing is the sunsets this Autumn so this post has a number of sunsets as I couldn’t decide which ones to use.
I haven’t included the photos I have used in posts over the past few weeks, such as the Wedged-tailed Eagle having lunch on the side of the road. I have also put some in reserve for posts to be written later on.
There is a a good selection so maybe a cup of your favourite beverage, a snack and get comfortable to see some of the stuff I found in my world in March.
I was very privileged to be part of a smoking ceremony. A traditional Aboriginal welcome to their part of country. The leaves that were on the fire, Lemon Scented Gum, Cinnamon Gum and another type of eucalypt leaf I can’t remember.
We stood or sat around the circular fire pit. One of the most amazing part was we were told that the smoke would touch us all. They began playing a welcome tune and the smoke went in a spiral around the circle of people, the smoke touching everyone. Yes the hairs on my arms and neck stood, it was a magical moment.
The leaves had to be put on regularly to infuse the people and the moment which gave us a sense of being part of country.
One of the murals inside of the National Centre of Indigenous Excellence where the NSW Landcare Forum was held
The city sunset
One afternoon, the sun was so yellow bathing the countryside giving an eerie glow to the Grass Tree sentinels that watch over my besties place.
I wish I had more time to explore Redfern its streets, houses and gardens. I love this ornate piece on a gate.
Back at my part of the world, I found a bit of rust.
One of the jardinieres in the front of a house
Meanwhile at the beach, the shadows on the sand caught my attention.
The colours of a Small Common Yellow Butterfly seemed to change as it sat on the lomandra.
My nighttime visitor who dropped in and commenced doing her laundry.
The early morning rain at my besties on a spiders web.
The water drops
While on the hunt for spiky things for Beckys March Square Photo Challenge, a purple Spider Orchid said pick me.
Some Eucalypt flowers look spiky but are so soft
Purple flowers in the morning sun.
Another orchid found at the Lismore Farmers Market where we go most Saturdays for breakfast and get some produce from the growers.
The Desert Rose is also for sale at the Market
After not doing much, the rain came to my besties in March (but not my place) and the bean plants started to grow and flower.
This is the very first time I have seem coconuts growing on a tree.
Time for a few bird photos. The cute little Striated Thornbill enjoys dropping into to use the bird bath
OK….now we are back at the beach. The Crested Terns flew in and sat on the beach with us.
On Macleay Island, the Bush-stone Curlews had a young one.
Having a drive around we came across a family of Grey-crowned Babblers having a feed along the side of the road.
One afternoon the sky was filled with a cacophony of squawking Little Corellas, the most Little Corellas I have ever seen in one huge flock. There were hundreds.
The flock stretched across the sky in the afternoon sun.
I love the graceful Ibis as the soar overhead.
The Black Kites are always hovering and swooping at the waste facility.
A look at the steering mechanism on a Black Kite.
I am so happy that the Scarlet Honeyeaters are still around the garden at home.
It is always a treat to come across Eastern Rosellas
The rain at my besties has bought out the happy looking Green Tree Frogs.
On the drive around we came across an Eastern Grey Kangaroo and her Joey.
The morning sun on the pampas grass seed heads
The car ferry on the way to Macleay Island was soon overtaken by the catamaran ferry
It was a treat when the yacht owner put up the red sails
The sunset over the bay made the end of a busy day worthwhile.
The sunset on the water
The farmer next door ploughed and planted a paddock next to my besties place. When it was ready, he let the cows into the paddock. This cow certainly seemed to enjoy having a snack.
The calf kept a wary eye on me.
The calf at sunset.
Another fabulous sunset.
Another day, another sunset. This is the eastern sky
I think this was my favourite sunset of March
Probably my favourite sunset photo. Well the suns gone down…..
…..and our Moon is in the sky, so it’s time to go.
I hope you have a had a good time wandering about, sometimes a bit chaotic, in my world. The featured photo is one from Beckys photo challenge which a lot of people liked. Maybe you have a favourite photo too?
Sitting at my desk, enjoying a bit of music while I look at others photos and stories, when suddenly a visitor drops in and then does his washing.
The word prompt from Sue is Green
A bit of green from my part of the world
Sometimes everything is so green
A patch of green among a circle of red
Here’s that blasted grasshopper again
I love the green among the other colours in the King Parrots feathers
The Green Tree Snake looking for something to eat
Emerald Doves certainly make the place look bright
Green just shoots out from the pine tree
Praying Mantis are always on the look out for anything that may be delicious
I miss the Green Catbirds that live at my besties old place
Here we are at what I saw in March. There has been a couple of photo challenges I have done in March so some of those photos aren’t in this lot. It is another big photo post. There are a few photos of snakes, spiders and other insects but try to have a peek through your fingers when they come along. Nature is full of wondrous colours and shapes.
Of course there are flowers and birds plus my March obsession of spiders webs. So I do recommend getting your favourite drink and perhaps a snack as you settle in and have a look at my month of March.
OK, I’ll get the insects out of the way first for all those who have told me of their dislike of bugs. You will be rewarded with seeing some lovely little creatures from my world.
I’ll ease you into the insect section with a lovely Wanderer Butterfly
Remember My Quest to photograph a Blue Triangle Butterfly. Well now it seems they are waiting for me. This Blue Triangle was on the road when we went for a walk.
There were a lot of Easten Common Brown Butterflies around this year.
A long range photo of a lovely bug with orange feelers. Some close ups are coming next.
When you are a small insect you really have to hang on if there is a breeze about.
I look fearsome but I’m not.
A small Fly with red eyes came to sit with us while we had a drink on the deck. Spiders next
Remember the spiders web from my March Squares. Lots of people were glad the spider wasn’t in the web. Well here he is, all 5 or 6mm of him. Better watch out if you are a mossie.
Some spiders hang up side down on their web.
First prize in the messiest web. I love the droplets on the web from the morning mist.
As part of my obsession, I have been playing with my photo editor. Do you like this one?
A bit of respite now. A Lemon Migrant Butterfly on Lantana
While on a day trip, we stopped at an art gallery which wasn’t all that great. Outside life was far more interesting. I found a Praying Mantis eating a Bee in the flower bed.
This poor little bloke couldn’t get his wings folded
Photographing some grass seeds I was photo-bombed by a Dragonfly
I don’t think it was this lovely red Dragonfly. I love the shadow
My favourite Australian Native Bees are the Blue-banded Bees which are in other posts this month. This Australian Native Bee has the best named of all. Let me introduce you to the Teddy Bear Bee. Do you know of a cuter bee name?
When we look out of the kitchen window at my besties place, neatly framed in the arch, waiting for his breakfast too is PJ the horse. He knows where to stand to get attention doesn’t he?
The grass seed photo I talked about earlier.
An Australian Native flower that grows at my place. This one was on the side of the road.
My besties Roses are lovely this year. The camera couldn’t capture the wonderful red colour though
A great year for Bromiliad flowering too.
This plant is called Ink Weed. Apparently you can make ink from the plant. Not sure which part but they did in the early days of the colony.
I have often shown the Blue Ginger flowers up close, sometimes with a Blue-banded Bee in them. This is one patch of them in my besties garden.
I love Cats Whiskers flowers. They are just opening in March.
Aren’t the colours of the garden striking?
Remember the many posts about the Dancing Lady Hibiscus. Here is a shot of the many flowers that came out this year taken from the verandah where we sometimes have breakfast, the most flowers we have ever seen. The Hibiscus bush trails up the Poinciana tree trunks. How many Dancing Ladies can you count?
A tiny Eco-system in a tree trunk on the side of the road.
The fence post was covered on one side with these fungi.
A lone fungus on the side of the hill.
I love this shot from under the Poinciana tree at the small fungi high up.
The Common Garden Skink, I call a Copper Headed Skink, doing its best not to look at the camera before it scurried away.
Apart from flowers, fungi, birds, the Poinciana also has a non-venomous Green Tree Snake who lives in the hollows. These Pythons are harmless
Beautiful little snake. Aren’t the colours and markings lovely?
I wondered why the chook was hesitant about coming out of her yard. When she did she would run across the yard to a sheltered spot. She never came into the front garden. Then I spied why. The Square-tailed Kites have built a nest in a eucalypt in the front yard
The Black Kites are everywhere near the Lismore Waste Center
On a drive to Caniaba, while waiting for some dairy cows to cross the road, I saw two Wedged-tailed Eagles wheeling about high in the sky.
The Little Wattlebird enjoyed singing and searching for food in the Poinciana tree
He saw me with my camera while up side down looking for grubs.
The tiny Buff-rumped Thornbill defied gravity looking for a snack in the Poinciana tree too
A Golden Whistler was in fine voice in the Poinciana tree.
Another singer in the garden is the Varied Triller
A flock of Silvereyes called in to have a feed
A Black-faced Cuckoo Shrike strained to see if it was food or just the wind blowing leaves about
On a recent walk, I spied a young Black-faced Cuckoo Shrike harassing its parent for food
“Where is everyone?” the Pied Cormorant seemed to say as it looked around before diving for fish once more in the Brunswick River.
Meanwhile on the beach at Brunswick Heads, a Welcome Swallow found a convenient stick to perch
Remember the Bromiliad Flower? The Lewins Honeyeater has been sticking his head into the flower to get a snack. The flower also rewarded him but giving him a pollen crown.
I love Wonga Pigeons. This pair were sitting in the garden preening and looking about.
The Grey Fantail looked like he was walking on stilts.
A great moment in March was seeing the Green Catbird feeding her young. Seconds later another young one came along which disturbed the scene and soon all three had flown off.
I can’t do a post with birds and not included Bobbin, the cute resident Northern Yellow Robin. I recently discovered that I have been calling the Yellow Robins around here and at my besties, Eastern Yellow Robins. There are two distinct races of Yellow Robins. So from now on Bobbin and his friends are Northern Yellow Robins.
Thanks for getting this far. I even made a second coffee to keep me going to the end.
The afternoon colour and trees looked so lovely
The Full Moon earlier in March looked great with the clouds drifting by.
I like to put the captions before the photo. What do you do? Do you prefer the captions before or after a photo? Let me know what you think?
Did you have a favourite photo from March?
The Tuesday photo challenge from Dutch goes the Photo is Bugs. I have so many bug photos I just had to stop or it would take me for ages to complete the photo challenge!!!
Here is a selection of my bugs. I don’t know the names of all of these so I will leave it up to you to identify the ones you know.
The Centipede who walked through my house.
The Plant Hopper who wouldn’t sit still for a photo in the kitchen
The Praying Mantis on the kitchen window
The Fly with a yellow face
The Fly with the green eyes and biting proboscis
The “birth” of a Cicada on the chook yard fence
The Tiger Cicada on a tree
The Bullants coming to defend the nest
A Beetle on a leaf
An insect marching with purpose across a leaf
A bright red insect on my car
A Mayfly on the wall
An insect stopping for a photo op
Have a search around my blog for lots more insect photos if you want
THE HOT SUMMERS DAYS are here and the lack of consistent rainfall has sapped my energy causing me to be indoors more often than out in the biting rays of the Sun.
However I did get out and about and went to the Bangalow Markets hoping for some photographic inspiration. There was a bit of action but on the whole my mojo wasn’t there.
The colours did grab my attention.
In some part of my besties garden, the flowers are always around. There is more rainfall and cooler weather there. I was taken by the red flower buds getting ready to burst forth.
Back in my garden the storms gave relief to the plants with a Murraya sending out its perfumed blossoms.
I love the Hibiscus schizopetalus. The flowers hang down from the long stems and dance in the breeze.
The small amounts of rain and a bit of hot weather has made a fungi or two pop out of the soil. This one was the biggest I have seen for a long while. I didn’t know what to use to show its size but a brick came in handy
It looked just as amazing from beneath as well.
It may be Summer but the Teak Tree has decided that it is time to lose its leaves making the garden have a temporary Autumn feel.
Summer time and the wasps are constructing their nests from chewed wood giving them a papery look, hence the name Paper Wasps. Unfortunately these are under the gutter at my besties and will have to go. When I had a bloke doing some building work at my place, he managed to disturb a nest and was stung on his ear and back. They chased him as he ran away from the nest. Paper Wasps in the bush are OK but around the house they have to move on.
Even though it is hot, early morning and late in the day, the butterflies are about. I think this is a Skipper whose wings have seen better days.
The Caper Whites are still around but no where near the numbers of late Spring.
Here is a large horse fly Triclista singularis’ These fly slowly with a loud buzzing and we gave them the nickname of B52s. When they do land and bite you really know it. This is the biggest fly around my place, around 25mm. It is rather pretty for a fly.
I noticed movement in the kitchen on a potted begonia I found a Praying Mantis. He hung around the kitchen for a few days before going outside. Fearsome looking but quite friendly.
The Yellow-faced Honeyeater looked pleased with itself as it puffed out its chest.
The constant calls of the Bar-shouldered Dove ring around the garden as they sit high among the trees.
They have a pink ring around their eyes which I hadn’t noticed before.
I love the feather patterns on the Little Wattlebird
There is a queue at the bird bath waiting for their turn.
A return visitor to the garden is a lovely little Forest Kingfisher. The orange spots stand out as does the wonderful white chest.
He was so obliging to turn around to show the striking blue feathers. When flying about the garden the flashes of blue catch the eye.
I hope the hot weather soon abates and February brings more things for me to share with you.
So much has happened since my last blog. I am no longer employed and have time to try to sort out my photos and other stuff. I am not able to do all that much as my hips are hurting a bit especially when I bend down. It’s quite amazing to discover how clumsy I am, I seem to drop so many things which leads me into decision-making. Do I leave whatever I have dropped there or do I really need to pick it up!!!
Enough of that and onto some of the wonders in nature I have come across as well as other things that I have thought was a bit special and hope you do too.
The succulent that is growing among the rocks in the garden, possibly dropped there and started to make a home for itself, has flowered. So many tiny flowers that only were around for a couple of weeks but added a drop of colour in the garden.
The Grevillea, Yamba Gold is flowering for the first time. The rains in July were a life saver for the garden which had a flush of life.
I gave the nectarine tree a severe trimming and this year it has been covered in blossoms.
The bees have been visiting the tree. The buzzing, as I walked about, was very loud.
The Stingless Native Bees have also discovered the tree.
Both bees decided to visit the same flower at the same time. It looks like a face off doesn’t it?
I love finding a Praying Mantis slowly swaying as it makes its way around the garden. Just after this photo, it decided to jump onto the camera and wander about. The photos of the Praying Mantis on the lens didn’t come out as good as I thought they would.
One evening in July, it was rather warm so I had windows open and in flew a fly. The fly just buzzed around me while I was trying to do stuff!!!
We had a few days away and while we were sitting outside enjoying the late afternoon and the sunset, this cloud caught my eye. I immediately thought it was Micky Mouse. What do you think?
All of a sudden there was a loud flapping of wings and the Brush Turkeys headed to their roost high in the Norfolk Island Pine.
The Eastern Spinebill hung around the garden all through the dry period and took over ownership of my favourite Honey Gem Grevillea. They did allow the Silvereyes to enjoy the flowers as well. The Silvereyes dropped in on their way north as they usually do in July.
The Silvereyes stayed around for a week or so before going on their way. Such a pretty little bird.
Late one afternoon the light was just amazing. It changed the whole colour of the Honey Gem making the greens so vivid.
There was a bit of competition at my besties bird bath. The birds have a bit of a bath or a drink.
Early one morning the
Little Wattlebird Olive-backed Oriole (thanks for the ID @carolprobets ) wondered if the water was too cold to have a bath.
I went onto the verandah and there was a flurry of activity as around 20 Red-browed Finches flew out of a patch of long grass where they were feeding on the seed heads. Some flew into the trees whereas others just popped onto the garden edges to watch what I was doing.
The palm frond made a good perch to wait until I went away so they could continue with their seed eating.
The Wrens make a splash of colour as the hop about the garden looking for things to eat.
Down at the beach I am always on the look out for birds of prey in the sky. This time the
White-bellied Sea Eagle Brahminy Kite (thanks for the ID @carolprobets )soared high in the sky, occasionally dropping lower to investigate a possible meal.
The unseasonal rainfall and warm weather produced so many fungi. The tiny orange fungi were all through the leaf litter.
These dimpled fungi pushed their way out of the soil in the morning sun.
I found this silver looking fungi under the tank stand. The red centre looked a lot redder than the photo shows.
These larger orange fungi were scattered in small clear patches throughout the bush.
Now come the tale of woe. During the few days I spent away enjoying myself at the resort in Kingscliffe, mayhem was happening at home. I came home to find that all of my chooks had been killed by a dog or perhaps two. I was devastated. There were four dead chooks in the chook house, a few piles of feathers in the bush and one pile of feathers on the road about 60 meters from the chook yard. When I saw those feathers on the road as I drove home, I had a sinking feeling. Speaking to some neighbours, I found out that three properties had some of their chooks killed as well. Apparently there had been a stray dog spotted around the neighbourhood.
Here is my rooster who was giving me the stink-eye for disturbing the foraging among the food scraps I just threw down. The six brown hens had only been here for about three weeks. These were the first hens I had ever purchased and they were just settling into the chook yard routine. One hen had just started to lay as well.
Sorry to end on such a sad note. I love my chooks and now I am sure the dog has gone, I’ll have to get some more chooks.