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Thread: Cool Australian wildlife

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2006

    Cool Australian wildlife

    A friend of mine invited me out to join him on the lake today for a spot of fishing. I jumped at the opportunity to take the camera out on some flat water and photograph whatever may present itself.

    Even though the warm weather really hasn't hit at all yet, there is quite a bit of wildlife emerging already, including reptiles.

    Along the way there were Moorhens, Swamphens, Coots, Black Swans, Grey Fantails, Variegated Blue Wrens, Little Pied Cormorants, Australasian Darters, (the black male and the white-chested female) and plenty of Australian Water Dragons. The water dragons were quite bold and didn't seem to mind close proximity as we drifted right up to the bank and reached out to touch them. Most seemed wary, but not overly disturbed.

    Of interest was an island covered in Silver Gulls. The whole thing was covered in nests, all with one to three eggs in each. They weren't too happy about me getting out of my kayak either, but I carefully picked my way through for a couple of shots before retreating back to the water without disturbing any nests. Of course there was the obligatory one-legged seagull - you know...the one that makes you feel sorry for it so you throw it some chips away from the rest of the flock, then drops the leg once fed.

    The rest of the pics for the day here.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Ah, what you and I call darters are completely different animals!

    I'm thinking barnswallow-like creatures.

    Where I live it's considered fishing courtesy if somebody's fishing lure, (rebel lures being the most common) gets taken by a cormorant or grebe and he's not with a group of his own buds, then the fishing parties to either side have to help.

    Boy, they sure look cute until you have to put your hands near their mouths. After doing this myself three times I have to say that throwing a blanket or jacket over the bird once it's "landed" is absolutely essential. And for God's sake don't just cut the line if you hook one of these birds! Not myself mind you, but young men will call you derisive names until you find somewhere else to fish. Because seeing the poor thing hanging out in the area with a big hook in its face bums out everybody's fishing for days.

    We are just going into winter here, (weather-wise, not calender-wise) As a matter of fact it was just this weekend that the night temps dropped into the upper forties, (F) and we have a cold rain going as we speak. Unlike most of my breathren who seem to spend the winter on Titan, where I live it means the rainy season has begun. There will be migrations of salamanders, chorus frogs will strike up the band and if I look in the old fallow places around where I live I may find puddles of fairy shrimp.

    Sadly we have west nile virus running amok and killing folks, well two people as of last week. (hey if I killed tens of thousands of birds, and two people, folks would say I ran amok!) and all the anti-mosquito measures are also anti fairy shrimp measures.

    Fairy shrimp are freshwater brineshrimp. They live in ephemeral but reliable pools as their eggs dry out and settle into the mud. When I was a child they were all over the place. But now running the places through my head, all the locations have buildings on top of them now.

    I guess I gotta find new places.
    Time wasted having fun is not time wasted - Lennon
    (John, not the other one.)

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2008
    The Netherlands
    Great pics Baz, must have been wonderful to be right there in the wild! I'm not sure I would have dared to bring my camera on such a tiny floating thingy
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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Quote Originally Posted by slang View Post
    Great pics Baz, must have been wonderful to be right there in the wild! I'm not sure I would have dared to bring my camera on such a tiny floating thingy
    It's actually VERY stable. As a sit-in rather than a sit-on-top, my centre of gravity is quite low. I've taken the gear out on moving water up to grade 2 rapids in a dry-bag, but I think I will normally refrain from that unless absolutely necessary.


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