29 August 2014

is there a better way to ... say goodbye?

I'm not sure how best sums up the times of late when I've considered putting Snap Happy Birding, (and Snap Happy Online), to rest.  

Deep breath here, gosh, for a time I was counting the posts, thinking that I would need to come up with something a little special for post 1,000 when it ventured into cyberspace.  Instead, now on post #958,  I'm closing the door. Somewhat reluctantly, and very gently too, so you can barely hear it.

Know that I've totally loved taking snapshots for the purpose of sharing.  Most who visited my blogs are from overseas, and like you, I find it interesting to see and compare notes, from the other side of the world, whatever the topic may be.

Many of you have stopped by on a very regular basis, and I've always appreciated that, and of course, the comments you left behind.  Your names and faces are indelible in my mind, as if you live locally.  I visualize your part of the world also since you've shared this too.  

An interesting journey; I've learnt a lot from each of you on your own blogs. Thank you so much, I've enjoyed your friendly banter, and I'm sure that when I hit POST on this, that I will think of something much more suited perhaps, and well-put, for my finale' post.  

20 August 2014

did you know?

It's often late at night when I'm in the kitchen making a hot milk and honey drink, and, a good sprinkling of cinnamon on top.  I really love that night-cap in the midst of cold winter nights.

And while I'm doing that, the radio is switched on, and I listened recently with interest to a talk-back caller saying to the host, "guess what I'm knitting?".   Bootees?  Socks??  A long pause, so tell us??

The answer was, jumpers for penguins!

For penguins caught up in oil-spills; after they have been cleaned, they get their very own jumper.  It doesn't have to be khaki, or even black and white ------- it can be ANY colour.  Just imagine seeing these little penguins waddling around in their brightly coloured knitteds.  That makes me smile.

You can see one, and read all about this project here  from the Penguin Foundation, at Phillip Island in Victoria.  Good news is, they currently have enough to fill the wardrobes of all penguins anticipated to need a jumper for a while.

Quaint story isn't it?

18 August 2014

Eastern Yellow Robin

On a cold, windy and drizzly rain night along the east coast of Australia, I'm posting something cheery.

Like many things in life, it's pretty hard to ... nail a favourite.  Your favourite colour, favourite flower, favourite bird?

The Eastern Yellow Robin is indeed a charmer; I guess it's that little dash of sunshine in the shadows that does it for me.

I could've cloned out the broken stick, but hey - that's how it was, nature isn't always perfect.  And the camera angle can't always be spot-on with just precious moments to capture the moment, agree?  Do you discard these images every time?  I liked that E.Y.Robin had it's tail fanned out some and a sparkle in the eye too.  If I'd have managed a second hit right there without the broken twig, I'd have discarded this one, but since I didn't .....it's a keeper (record-shot) to share.

16 August 2014

more from the Central Coast lagoons, and beyond

Continuing on from yesterday's post and by now, the morning that had started out grey and threatening rain, is starting to brighten up with some welcome sunshine.

Black Cormorants


Do you know what it is flying overhead?  I can't be sure, so I'm not saying.  
There were a number of Darters taking time out in these Casuarinas.

Late addition:  Thanks for Christian Perrin's comment "I think the raptor is a Whistling Kite judging from the silhouette and habitat. The long, unforked tail is another indicator".

up the timber and gravel steps, takes you over to the Captain Cook Lookout

walking by one of many hundreds of Wattle species growing around Australia; our national floral emblem.

and Hardenbergia too - sometimes known as Happy Wanderer

lots of Silver Gulls down there.  Then it was off again to another spot to have lunch.

Dusky Moorhen was there

and Mallards, lots of them.  A little bit of bling to sign off with.

Sharing with Saturday's Critters

15 August 2014

Coastal lagoon meeting point

Here was the 8.30 a.m. meeting point for a small group of birders.  It had been showering the night before and earlier on during the morning as I drove on down the coast, and we all were hopeful that the skies would clear up.  

Within the next fifteen minutes someone spotted a White-Bellied Sea-Eagle.  It was way over the other side of the lagoon there, and being hassled by a crow.

How brave, or indignant of the crow!  Gosh, you'd think the beak of a W.B.S-eagle could snap a crows neck in half!

Purple Swamphen

missed getting a shot of this Egret in flight ... before it made it here.  I'm forever hopeful of one of those jaw-dropping-extended legs-gliding-in-flight photos!  

a visitor heading our way at morning-tea-break

then after another short drive, a brief stop off here to sight albatross ... way out

...to be continued

12 August 2014

Kookaburra, Eastern Rosella, and Red Wattlebird

a breezy morning, and Kookaburra was on duty

perched on the weather-vane atop the arbour in back garden

Amazing how they will spot the movement of a worm or grub moving under the surface of the soil. I'm hoping it visits regularly as the weather warms up and this Whip Snake I've spotted a couple times over, is likely to awake from hiding spot!  Another pair of eyes watching out; ideally those of a kookaburra, would be rather handy from my point.

another was sitting in the cold shade in the bush corridor outside the fence, with feathers fluffed and keeping its feet warm.

I'm not sure why the change of head position, it seemed relaxed this way for some time, maybe it had a stiff neck?  Doing a little pilates?

Eastern Rosella pair are about again as spring approaches; not so easy to nab a photo of them, they're very wary

then the Red Wattlebird appeared

09 August 2014


Mallard I'm assuming, even though not showing the recognizable white collar; maybe females?

Pacific Black Duck

Pied Oystercatcher

Sharing with Saturday's Critters and I'd Rather B Birdin

07 August 2014

Royal Spoonbill with video

It was a not-in-the-wild photo opportunity for this one, but it was so special to watch this beautiful wetland bird up close.

the 'textured' pattern showing on the bill may be the vibration-detectors that are actually inside - these water-birds can feed day or night with this inherent asset.

I was surprised to learn that this bird weight approx. 78 grams.  With a bill like it has I might’ve thought it’d be much heavier.

 mighty good sized koi-carp too!

Reading: Royal Spoonbill

03 August 2014

Crested Pigeon, Spotted Dove, and a sprinkling of local botanicals

...it was just before 9.30 am as I wandered about the resort perimeter at Alice Springs N.T., in search of birds. Well, there was nothing to find it seemed, that morning. Perhaps it was just a litle too cold, even though the sun was shining. It would take a while before the 1 degree celcius start, gained any momentum.

Almost ready to give up, when I caught sight of this Crested Pigeon landing well ahead, so a great opportunity to aim my camera ..

growing nearby, Eremophila

about to be, gum-blossoms

like these, a little tired...

that end up looking like these .. quaint gum-nuts

still here preening

and ..Wattle

...looking like, a Spotted Dove up there on the power line

soaking up the warmth of the morning sunshine

Sharing with I'd Rather b Birdin'