Saturday, 23 April 2016

Sundry Autumnal snaps

This is more or less a grab-bag of photos I have taken over the past few days.  Very little great art (or addition to science) but I like them!

The first is a Huntsman spider found walking around on a large nautilus shell we picked up somewhere.
We quite often hear the chiming calls of Grey Currawongs around the place, but it was unusual to have 2 of them pay us a visit.
 Here is a close-up of one, showing that the base of the tail feathers is not white.  This is important in SA, where this species is very dark, and this feature (plus the call) distinguishes the birds from Pied Currawongs.
Also in our garden, in early May we were visited by an immature Grey Butcherbird, which posed nicely with some colourful Pistachio leaves.
It munched a couple of Centipedes but I missed that snap.

Touring around the other day we spotted a Grey Teal trying to imitate a headless chook (usually my role) and being observed by a Black-fronted Dotterel.
On the subject of water birds I noticed these two Australian Shelducks sharing a dam with some Australian Wood Ducks.
While visiting Kelly's Swamp an Internediate Egret was present .  This shows the nice yellow bill and that the yellow doesn't go past the eye.  (I suspect this is the same bird that has occasionally been seen at a pond in a roundabout on Parkes Way.
On a later visit to the Swamp I came across a much commoner Egret, Egretta novaehollandiae.
Yes folks, the commonest member of the family is called a White-faced Heron by you, me and rest of the hoi polloi but an Egret by the taxonomists.  I wonder when they are going to get their dosage right?

On that visit I also got an image of Pink-eared Ducks which shows the pink ear on one of them.
Looking at the relative prominence of various features, and noting that taxonomists (see above) have rejected the blindingly obvious name of Zebra Ducks I think we should start a petition on Change.org to have the vernacular name changed to Ginger-vented Duck.  Perhaps we could get Quilton to sponsor the petition?

While out in the bush I noticed a wombat waddling along in front of me.  Then I just about got skittled as a second one rushed past me from behind.  The first dived into a hole in a creek bank.
On a nice Autumn day where do the cattle choose to camp? On a nice warm bridge, where they can look at poplar leaves changing.
The morning of 26 April was quite brisk (1oC at 0645) and gave some nice fog pix on our dog walk.


 Back at the ranch at mid-day the sun was shining through the changing foliage on our Pistachio.

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