Saturday, 29 October 2016

Some blitz comments

No, not referring to the unpleasantness around London in 1940.  This is about a concerted lightning observation of birds around Canberra by members of COG.  No explosives were used in this foray, although some would have been handy when I found a gate which had always been openable in past years now had about $200 of padlocks on it!

As it was about birds, and specifically breeding birds, I'll start with a couple of avian images.  The first is an adult and juvenile Eastern Yellow Robin at Blue Tiles picnic area.  As the juvenile begged, and got some food provided this is a breeding record.
The second image is from Queanbeyan Sewage Works, with some Great Cormorants nesting on a pontoon in the middle of one of the settling ponds.
 As a result of the locked gate we had to hike across country.  That wasn't all bad as Frances spotted this Blue-tongued Skink
This is the first site: a pocket of regenerating native vegetation in a scummy pine forest.  It is basically a geophysical observatory.  Note the poor weather.
 Our second (intended) site was the Kowen Pound.  We added in an unintended site as a result of having to trek through the scummy pine forest.  On the way to the Pound I noticed this nice crop of Leucochrysum.
 Here is the Pound habitat, plus small dog.
The Pound was basically a Travelling Stock Reserve.  What do drovers do?  They drink beer and leave the empties behind.  Back in the day the breweries use to get the year stamped in the bottom of the bottles.  Most bottles found are from the 1950s and 60s (because cattle began to be trucked rather than droved in the late 1960s, not because drovers stopped drinking) but it was most interesting to find one that predated the original Blitz.  I left it in situ.
 Eucalyptus macrorhyncha flower with ubiquitous hoverfly.
In the afternoon I went to a different part of Kowen, on the Molonglo River.  This is looking down at Blue Tiles picnic area.
 Here is a nearby site where a small peninsula juts out causing a large bend in the river.
 This is a different species of Eucalyptus, which was very popular with Honeyeaters.
 A Painted Lady and a hoverfly on Stackhousia monogyna.
 I think this is a Small Grass-Yellow.

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