Wednesday, 29 July 2015

ANPS Points at a Hut and Pines for an Island

It was a trifle cool to start.
 Following the principle of 'truth in advertising' for which I am a total fiend I must confess that snap was taken at 10:30 so just imagine how cold it was at 9:30.

Not all the water was frozen.  Some of it was moving quite rapidsly (sic).
 The speed is even more obvious with zoom (quite appropriate when talking about speed).
Back at the Crossing the water was quite smooth and, unlike the COG expedition a couple of weeks back, well below the ford.
Some of the water had formed drips on these Casuarina cunninghamiana needles.
Across the river an Acacia dealbata was in fine bloom.
So was the Leucopogon attenuatus on our side.  As we walked back the honeyed scent was quite apparent.

I took photos of both Grevilleas.  At first the G. lanigera  seemed a little far from full flowering  ...
 .. but it eventually lifted its game.
 G. juniperina was a tad more reluctant.
This is not a Grevillea, but Amyema cambagei parasitising the Casuarinas.
 This is one of the very few wild plants of Muehlenbeckia tuggeranong.  If it wasn't known only from this location I'd rate it as the least exciting plant in the ACT, rather than a podium contender for most exciting!
There were a fair lot of weeds around including these Triffids - sorry Verbascum major - for which a member of the group provides a scale.  Snowballs were not being thrown (it had warmed up a bit) but as usual on this blog, obfuscation has been applied to defeat face recognition stuff.
On the subject of weeds, we initially thought this was the Muehlenbeckia but it was concluded it was in fact the evil St Johns Wort in leafless mode.
That led me to contemplate whether if a plant community dominated by members of the family Poaceae is a grassland whether the Murrumbidgee Corridor should be referred to as a Wortland?
There were quite a few birds around.  This Darter - I think a young bird - was most interesting with sunlight shining through its wings.
 A Pelican flew overhead, but defeated my attempts to switch from macro to mega-zoom mode, and get an in-focus shot, as it passed by.
At Pine Island we found a large number of Red-rumped Parrots.  These two show the seual dimorphism.
It never fails to astonish me how the males, IMHO among the most colourful of parrots, can be damn hard to spot when feeding on the ground.
I think this one has a beakful of tuber of something it has extracted from the ground, or possibly a chunk of Casuarina cone.

A mystery was a bird we heard call at the lunch stop.  Both myself and another very experienced birder thought it sounded like a cuckoo, possibly a Shining bronze-cuckoo.  However we saw it fly into a bush and it looked too big (as well as being well early) for that species.  Despite a good hard look we couldn't find it again (and it didn't call again - most unlike a bronze cuckoo).

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