Sunday, 25 November 2012


A group of White-winged Choughs visited for awhile this morning, scratching through the leaf litter and the odd flight to some low branch. Apart from the small sign of white on the wing the name looks like a misnomer, until they fly and the large white wing patch is visible.

Thursday, 22 November 2012

Tattered Old Lady

Well actually a "Southern Old Lady Moth" Daspodia selenophora that took shelter under on a rafter under the deck. The camouflage is so good I am sure I would not have seen it if it hadn't fluttered onto that spot having been disturbed from the ground below. A reasonably large moth, with a wingspan to 90mm with large eye spots and generally a night flier.
One of the NOCTUIDAE family and found throughout southern Australia, NZ and south to Macquarie Island in Antarctic waters. the caterpillars feed mainly on Acacia species 

Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Damsel on a rock

The pond and bog garden are popular with Dragonflies and Damselflies and today a damselfly was happily sunning on a rock in the bog garden.
Whereas the majority of Damselflies hold their wings erect at rest one family known as Flatwings act more like Dragonflies with their wings held flat. There are quite a few species and many look very similar but I think this one is the Common Flatwing Damselfly austroargiolestes icterometas.

Saturday, 17 November 2012

Double black

A few Yellow-tail Black Cockatoos attracted my attention as they moved around some trees in the front paddock and I took a distant shot of one sitting in a Casuarina.

 I was going to try and get a bit closer but as I was about to step off the driveway onto the grass  a glance down stopped me in mid-stride.  I would have almost stepped on top of a Red-bellied Black Snake that was trying to get some warmth on a cloudy cool day. The cockatoo took off before I could make a detour and the snake was quite happy just to stay where it was so a photo and I left it to continue getting what ever warmth was to be had.

Friday, 16 November 2012

Not mistletoe

We have a large Spotted Gum E. maculata just near our verandah that has quite a few clumps of mistletoe Dendrophthoe vitellina on a number of the branches. These are a prime feeding source for many birds, but one is so closely identified with mistletoe that it is called the Mistletoe Bird. At present the mistletoe is in flower so the birds are feeding on the nectar and insects attracted to the flowers. Once the berries form then this is the real attraction for the mistletoe birds and their relationship with the spread of the plant, as the fruit passes quickly through the bird's system and the excreted seed which has a particularly sticky coating, is left on a branch to sprout and grow on the host plant.
Today I found a pair of Mistletoe Birds Dicaeum hirundinaceum opposite the tree and feeding on the berries of the Native Peach Trema aspera.
The male was more interested in singing to impress the female, where as she was very busy working all over the bush and not giving much opportunity for a photo, but she did display the only bit of colour from her otherwise brown tones.

Monday, 12 November 2012

Off with the old

Found a discarded well-worn outfit this morning, where it was hung up in the branches of a shrub.

Dull, brownish tones give no hint to the beautiful colours that it once had, but just in the palm alongside was the owner of this old outfit. Not too keen to show off the new suit but just give a a quick view before moving back into cover and the security of the sharp spines of the palm. 

Common Green Tree Snake