Ruling the roos

It’s pretty fitting that Big Daddy K has been visiting our block lately! Today is Australia Day so what better than hosting half the Aussie coat of arms in our backyard!!

It’s dark right now, the wee hours, and Big Daddy K is still out there happily munching under the clothesline.

Sorry, I’d have to spotlight him to get a photo right now. He’s a big boy, I don’t want to startle him close up.

But here he is – down the front block, a couple of days ago.

Large male Eastern Grey kangaroo, in Yass Valley, Australia

Big Daddy K on da block

 

Not bothered a bit by the neighbour’s building racket.

Large male Eastern Grey kangaroo, in Yass Valley, Australia

Breakie on the hop

 

Now we know what’s been leaving the cubed calling cards on our sun lounges!  ♦

 


Photos taken with Olympus Stylus s1, Jan 2017

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How green is my valley!

View of 'Euralie' and Black Range beyond, via Yass, New South Wales, Australia

Drought broken!

How would you like to wake up to this view? Or sit with a cuppa and watch the sun sink in crimson streaks across these hills?

We drive here quite often and sit and watch, with a steaming coffee in hand.

After weeks and weeks of rain, the dead grass is gone and the hills and creek valley are green felted. The dams are full and the causeway gushing.

The black polka dots of cows across the creek are still, until the farmer’s ute turns up, then watch them gallop!

View across to 'Euralie' from Shearsby Crescent, Yass, New South Wales, Australia

50 shades of green

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Creepy critters (Silhouette)

 

Flying foxes at Parramatta Park, Sydney, Australia

“Children of the night” *

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Last winter, we walked in Parramatta Park just on dusk. We paused on the footbridge to admire the silhouettes of the grand old trees in the fading light. A squabbling and screeching of ‘birds’ rippled the shadows.

Slowly we realised the heavy boughs were in fact covered with the hanging pods of hundreds of roosting flying foxes. A creepy fascination held me fast to the spot to watch them.

Flying foxes are larger than a bat and have a furry face like a fox. They eat pollen, nectar and fruit. The colony in Parramatta Park is of grey-headed flying foxes. More photos and information here.

quote from Dracula. Dir. Tod Browning. Per. Bela Lugosi. Universal, 1931. Motion picture.

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Weekly Photo Challenge, ‘Silhouette’

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_photo_challenge/silhouette-2014/

Photo taken 11 August 2013 with my old Canon PowerShot A550

Footbridge over Parramatta River, near Byrnes Ave, Parramatta Park

Parramatta, in the Greater Sydney area, New South Wales, Australia

 

[https://goo.gl/maps/uGiDE]

River gum nest (Weekly Photo Challenge: Threes)

Here’s my first ever Weekly Photo Challenge, just had to do this one…

We’ve been ‘champing at the bit’ to go for a paddle on the Murrumbidgee River at Jugiong (New South Wales, Australia). Last weekend was our chance.

There’s a great little sandy beach under a towering gum at the end of Dixon Lane.

River gum, Murrumbidgee River, Jugiong, New South Wales, Australia

River gum, a ‘widow maker’

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At this spot the river has a handy low-level shore for getting into the kayak.

At its deepest the river was only knee deep, with a sandy bottom, so very easy for us L-plate kayakers. (It’s also a great swimming spot for kids and pets at the moment.)

There are a couple of picnic tables back up the bank near the grass car park. But many noisy possums live in the she-oaks, if you’re thinking about camping!

But a warning: the gum tree above the little beach is a ‘widow maker’ so don’t sit under it in case it drops a deadly branch. In the last storm two sizable branches ended up in the water.

The resident cockatoo was happy, though, as it made a new nest hole for her. She very noisily guards this lovely spot on the river!

River gum, Murrumbidgee River, Jugiong, New South Wales, Australia

Any nest in a storm

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River gum (detail), fallen into Murrumbidgee River, Jugiong, New South Wales, Australia

Broke on the water…

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And for the three-photo story as a gallery:

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Weekly Photo Challenge, ‘Threes’

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2014/02/21/weekly-photo-challenge-threes/

Photos taken 18 November 2012 (no. 1) and 23 February 2014 (no’s 2 & 3)

with my old Canon PowerShot A550.

Jugiong, New South Wales, Australia

Murrumbidgee River picnic spot, Dixon Lane, off Riverside Drive (Old Hume Highway), Jugiong, New South Wales, Australia

– Turn south off the Hume Highway at Jugiong onto Riverside Drive (Old Hume Highway). In the village, turn left at Dixon Lane, a fenced track that leads to the river. 

Newspaper article on the bushranger days at Jugiong: ‘Jugiong: Historic town on the Hume Highway’, The Age (on-line newspaper), 8 February 2004, http://www.theage.com.au/news/new-south-wales/jugiong/2005/02/17/1108500196919.html

 

Kangaroo family portrait

Kangaroo mob in the back paddock, Yass Valley, New South Wales, Australia

Say, “Leaves!”

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To celebrate Australia Day (January 26), my ‘One Shot Wonders’ this week will feature some good old Aussie icons.

So today’s Aussie icon is the kangaroo, ‘roo, boomer, Skippy…

There was a well-loved children’s television show in the late ’60s, ‘Skippy, the Bush Kangaroo’. Just about every kid I knew watched it.

My brother even looked like Sonny, the main (human) character from the show and best friend of Skippy.

Following the show, we all tried to whistle with a gum leaf (is that possible?) and thought that kangaroos made that tongue clicking sound. (The reality couldn’t have been more wrong! Ever heard a kangaroo? They grunt and blow air when angry.)

Like Lassie, Skippy always saved the day. Good on ya, Skip!

[http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/0/02/Skippy-dvd.jpg/200px-Skippy-dvd.jpg]

“Skippy, Skippy, Skippy the bush kangaroo.

Skippy, Skippy, Skippy our friend ever true.”  

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Aussie icons, ‘One Shot Wonders’

Photo taken Yass Valley about August 2013, with Fuji FinePix S2980

Skippy the Bush Kangaroo is an Australian television series created by John McCallum, produced from 1966–1968, telling the adventures of a young boy and his intelligent pet kangaroo, and the various visitors to the fictional Waratah National Park in Duffys Forest, near SydneyNew South Wales.

Ninety-one 30-minute episodes were made over the three seasons of production.”

[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Skippy_the_Bush_Kangaroo]

January’s new joey (‘One Shot Wonders’)

A glance out the kitchen window on New Year’s Day and I was surprised to see a young female kangaroo and her little joey.

They were taking shade from the heat, resting under the row of pines and gums on our back fence. So they were only about 25 metres from our kitchen sink.

I watched them for a little while, fighting the urge to run for the camera and maybe miss them altogether.

The mum kangaroo stood to the left of her joey, with her back to the house. She sniffed the air and then started to have an arm scratch, like she was scrubbing in the shower.

The joey, facing the same direction, started doing the same thing almost in sync. From where we were standing it looked like a lesson in Japanese fan dancing – but with black claws.

This time I just had to dash to catch it on camera but by the time I got back the mum kangaroo was hopping away onto the neighbours’ shaded lawn.

Kangaroo joey at the fence

Joey. But is this a Joseph? … or a Josephine?

Confused, the joey stayed at the fence maybe trying to look for a way through? It was like it had got left behind in the supermarket.

It was so small, much less than a metre high, with tiny front legs. It had a sweet little grey face.

Finally, not happy being on its own, it hopped after it’s mum.  The call of the pouch was too strong.  ♦

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‘One Shot Wonders’ series

Birds, reflections, evening – Any tips?

This is ‘the one that got away’ – the photo, that is.

Galahs drinking on the Yass River, Joe O'Connor Park, Yass, New South Wales, Australia

Galahs’ ‘Happy hour

A late afternoon coffee, sitting down on the bank of Yass River at Joe O’Connor Park. Just magic!

While we were talking possible kayak launch spots and where you’d cast the fishing line, a flock of pink and grey galahs wheeled shrieking over the bend in the river.

The galahs come up from the river gorge at this time of evening to roost (somewhere?) for the night. We know, they usually fly over our house. You can’t miss them, they’re very noisy. It’s a wonderful spectacle.

So it seemed they’d followed us into town!

They careened over the hill to the park and settled in the old trees on the bank. They found the submerged tree, a good perch with easy access to the water for drinking.

But low light and a fast, flittering, squabbling flock of galahs was beyond my L-plate photography skills. (It was mesmerizing in real life though!)

I can’t wait to get back to the river again. Maybe I can try out the video function to capture them? If only I can herd the galahs back onto that fallen tree!

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So do you have any tips for a better photo?

Technical details: Camera Model Name Fuji FinePix S2980   Continue reading