Scarcely a thing, I said at their retreating backs (since some people make it very clear they don't want help).
Scarcely a thing, except for:
Drawn-out gurgle from left-front 10 metres off in Scleria. Hello, Little Bittern, nice of you to announce your presence. Yes, I know, that's it for the day. Pity the impatient pair missed it. They wouldn't have appreciated the signal? You're right.
Scolding from two metres up and a metre out from left of hide. Gidday Mr Willie and Mrs Willie, how are the two wagtail youngsters? See for myself? Of course. They look bonny!
Tinkling from paperbark three metres out in front. Morning, Crimson Finches, how are you doing? Goodness only knows how many eggs or young you've got tucked in that nest hole. You'll know in good time, they said.
Churring from directly in front of hide. Hi, Brown-backed Honeyeaters, you're proving me wrong, aren't you? Going ahead with a nest I can touch? Too right, they said, you people can't see what's right in front of you.
Don't forget us, just because we're down here on the water, called three juvenile Comb-crested Jacanas. We don't like too much movement above us, but we'll be here for an hour or so.
So will we, came nervy voices from waters right and left of the hide. Hello, Green-pigmy Geese, starting to trust us, are you? Just a wee bit, they said. Did you know you go blue when backlit? I asked. Whatever, they said.
Hey what about us? chimed in the Australasian Reed Warbler, the Golden-headed Cisticola and some Red-backed Fairy-Wrens. We turn up here most days and you're leaving us till last.
No, I'm not, because here's a Yellow Honeyeater almost at touching distance and those White-breasted Woodswallows on the hand rail deserve a mention, and I'd almost forgotten the Buff-banded Rail darting for cover as I arrived and the Great Egret who stalked closer and closer to the hide before getting hungry for elsewhere and the Magpie Geese squadrons overhead and the Hardheads and Pacific Black Ducks and Wandering Whistling Ducks splashing close by and the squeaky-cushion noises from the unseen White-browed Crakes.
Besides, you birds are beautiful, but so too are the dragonfles, the damselflies, the butterflies, and that tree frog there right in front of the hide, sunning every day low on the Scleria.
But after all that there's scarcely anything here, right? Wrong, but that's another story.