Little winner today, juvenile Leaden Flycatcher fresh from nest with devoted parents shuttling food in every few seconds.
No surprise having the young bird appear from 'nowhere'. Leadens build dainty camouflaged bowl nests which defy sighting from below the limbs and forks supporting them.
Little losers today, Brown-backed Honeyeaters with part-finished nest almost within touching distance outside tower hide. Nest found at base of paperbark, blown down by ongoing gusty winds.
A minor setback given the industry and persistence of Brown-backeds.
Kookaburras like to laugh, and might often do so as they watch other birds toiling to build complex nests. They just don't dig such toil. Better, they chortle, to take over readymade hollow, or do minor mining on used termite nest in tree.
Here's a prime possie right by the beach, plenty of food on the surrounding paperbarks, eucalypts and acacias, and mostly congenial neighbours, though bit of a problem with flies (Kookaburras don't rate nest hygiene highly).
And perhaps unseen nestlings can be fussy. Parent bird made several efforts to pass on spider, and couldn't find a taker. No such reluctance from within the nest when insects were offered. Imagine comment inside the nest: Spiders? You must be joking! Having a laugh, are you? Yuk, yuk, yuk.
Not far away, female Olive-backed Sunbird goes about serious business of weaving a 'real' nest. No time to mess about laughing the day away here!
Frilled Lizards like a spot of sunbathing on or near the ground after a spell of rain. Warmth then can make them a bit dozy as danger nears. Which can lead to a mad scramble up the nearest tree. Not all trees offer sanctuary. Outcome: Frilly stuck between impossible ascent and risky descent. No way up smooth trunk. Camera-wielder below.
Maybe same lizard a day later, secure in grip on smaller coarse-barked tree.
Running into thick cover rather than climbing needs thought before presenting back to danger.
Sitting still can work, but parking rails don't allow any blending into the background.
Nor does posing atop sawn-off old trunk.
Just as well most people just want to admire nature . . .
. . . even as they persist in trying to improve upon it - just a little!
Fell into little trap upon seeing rounded white 'door' flap open and shut before vanishing in spiky tuft of coarse grass yesterday. Trapdoor Spider or Funnelweb, mistaken conclusion.
Back this morning with macro lens and flash at ready, gently poke soft straw down funnel/tunnel and suddenly there's a Wolf Spider at the door. She's not alone. Web ball of Wolves-to-be tagging along tied to her stomach.
She seemed more curious than furious at the intrusion and turned back into her tunnel after putting up with some wrangling for the camera. All going well she'll bite the ball open and carry her young on her back till they get hungry and go their way.
Those wanting to make a name for themselves - and for many other things - might consider looking in their own backyards. There are thousands of things living there yet to be described fully and named precisely. Which Wolf Spider is that knocking at the door?
Plenty of fishing stories boil down to little more than boring old crap, as Black-winged Stilt feeding today in shallows near Payets Tower might attest. Might, if it had bought into above inadvertent illusion.
'Fish' turns out to be boring old crap stuck on the mud. Just another story about the one that got away.
Whited-faced Heron (same site, two days ago) comes up with dinkum catch. Not a fish, but anything living in or near the water is fair fare.
Brolgas don't come up with many fish but like getting stuck into the mud. And muddy water. Many these days showing necks stained brown by the now fast-evaporating water.
Getting a bit dry on slightly higher ground.
Higher still, Brahminy Kite (once often miscalled Fish Eagle) circles the Payet Pool. Species can tell few fishing stories as it's more likely to be seeking to hook insects or frogs from sedges and reeds.
Whistling Kites also show little fishing ability, though a few (ditto Black Kites) learn to watch for and snatch dying fish as they rise gasping to the surface of stagnating waters.