Archive for August, 2013

Rudely awoken

Close up view of a Magpie Lark

This morning I took a few minutes out of various tasks to sit in the sunshine on our back veranda.

We haven’t seen much sunshine of late, but this is the last day of a cold, wet and miserable winter for us here in South Australia. Today the weather has suddenly turned on spring – a day early. Not complaining, mind you. I did a little reading and strangely, the eyelids became somewhat heavy – and I fell asleep. Good – I needed the rest.

A few minutes into my dream world and I was rudely awoken by a raucous Magpie Lark (“Murray Magpie” or “Peewee”) calling loudly about a metre away.

How inconsiderate.

Close up view of a Magpie Lark

The chase is on

Collared Sparrowhawk

A little while ago I was outside in the garden attending to one of those mundane jobs around the house. Okay, I’ll admit I was checking the washing hanging out to dry. My attention was suddenly grabbed by a great uproar coming from the local resident honeyeaters. They were creating a terrible noise, so I knew that something was disturbing them big time.

As I looked around a Collared Sparrowhawk (see photo above) landed on the power line coming in towards the house. Next thing, it took off after its lunch – a Common Starling. Well, I’m not sure if it actually caught its prey. The last I saw of them was the starling zooming a full speed across the garden and then weaving through the mallee scrub behind our house, hotly pursued at full speed by the hawk. I was amazed at how fast they were going, but when you consider those sharp talons, one can hardly blame the starling for getting a move on.

Beautiful Budgerigars

Budgerigars, Adelaide Zoo

I am quite pleased with this photo of two budgerigars. It was taken through the wire netting of one of the aviaries in the Adelaide Zoo here in south Australia. The viewer is not even aware of the netting between my camera lens and the birds.

Budgerigars, probably the most kept pet bird in the world, is truly magnificent in its natural colours and in its natural environment. I know breeders of this species have developed all sorts of amazing colour variations: yellow, blue, purple, white, speckled and even red – though I suspect the photo of a red one I found online was actually of a bird dyed that colour.

My question is: WHY?

Why mess with beauty and perfection. The natural colours are just perfect.

Rant over.


Up close and personal with a king

Male King Parrot Adelaide Zoo

We have many colourful parrots in Australia. In fact, our land is aptly called “The Land of Parrots”. One of the more colourful parrots native to Australia is the King Parrot. Sadly, I’ve only seen this species on a handful of occasions. I should spend more time visiting my grandchildren in Sydney because my son tells me that they often fly through or spend time in their garden in Artarmon. I’ve missed them every time I’ve been there!

The bird shown in today’s photo is up close and personal. It was easy to get this photo because it was taken in a walk through aviary in the Adelaide Zoo. Moreover, the keeper had just fed the birds and it was more interested in eating than what I was doing. Added to that was the zoom facility on my camera.

Nice shot, I reckon. What do you think? Leave a comment or two, please.

Now that’s an interesting hairdo

Pied Heron, Adelaide Zoo

When I look at the photos I am posting today I cannot but help being amused. That’s one very interesting hairdo. I’m not sure if one can draw that conclusion, however, seeing birds have feathers, not hair.

Still, the arrangement of the feathers on this Pied Heron amuses me and I hope my readers also have a little chuckle.

Let me know what you think by leaving a comment or two.

The bird featured in today’s photos is a part of the collection of birds in a walk through aviary in the Adelaide Zoo here in South Australia.

Pied Heron, Adelaide Zoo

Pied Heron, Adelaide Zoo

Pied Heron, Adelaide Zoo