Village on the verge

December 5, 2016
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North of Mudgee, Wollar village is littered with evidence of the progress and prosperity that original owner Excel promised would come to the community once the Wilpinjong mine was under way. Peabody, ’The Big American’, bought it, the mine began in 2006, and Wollar soon felt the impact indeed… Noise, both audible and low frequency, […]

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Wagtail babies

November 14, 2016
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As expected, when I returned from a few days away, the Willy Wagtails’ chicks were hatched and hungry. Silent though, unlike the demanding magpie baby in the tree near my bedroom. It was soon clear there were three little mouths to be stuffed, and given that they were constantly opening and shutting, I was amazed […]

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Incoming birds

October 26, 2016
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It being Spring, the Willy Wagtail mum has been busily readying last year’s nest for the 2016 brood. The nest had looked perfectly serviceable, as it was as neat and symmetrical as she had originally made it. However she seemed driven to add another layer, which brings it alarmingly close to the verandah roof. While […]

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Sky mimics

October 17, 2016
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As at my old Mountain, the sky here is as important for my visual delectation as the land. And I am as fanciful about what it offers. Like this sunrise, where the billowing white foreground cloud looked so like bushfire smoke, unlikely as that was, that I had to go out and sniff the air […]

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Kookaburra pair

October 2, 2016
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I have a lot of Kookaburras here — often called more fully Laughing Kookaburras, rarely called by their scientific name, Dacelo gigas. As they do live in family groups, comprising several generations, that’s not surprising. There are enough big trees left along the creek sides that they must have found enough nesting hollows to keep […]

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Where green rules

September 23, 2016
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When you move to a new area, life is busy setting up your own place and you only take time off for regional sightseeing when you have visitors. Tapin Tops National Park near Wingham is one regional sight I’ve been meaning … and meaning…to see. Last week I did. It’s high, with the access a […]

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Finch flurries

September 12, 2016
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Now that Spring is showing itself and the weeds amongst my ‘lawn’ are seeding, clouds of teeny grass finches are harvesting them. The ones now visiting are gorgeous little birds — Red-browed Finches, native to Eastern Australia’s coastal edge, or at least east of the Dividing Range. They have a red rump, pink legs, a […]

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Casuarina honey

August 24, 2016
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For about a week I have had a constant hum in my ears. Given I was recently diagnosed with moderate hearing loss, nothing would surprise me. But then a visitor heard it too, and sensibly wondered where the bees were. Not many plants are flowering right now, so I was at a loss. Until I […]

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Last post at Tarwyn Park

August 10, 2016
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The coal train rumbled past behind Tarwyn Park, as it often does on its route to and from Newcastle’s coal port and the Western Coalfields, where the Ulan, Moolarben and Wilpinjong mines are busy trashing other valleys, other villages. But on this last day of July 2016, it seemed an unwarranted rubbing in of salt […]

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Birds and beasts

July 25, 2016
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On the creek flat paddock both birds and beasts feed together amicably. Clancy the horse is the boss and keeps the two dairy steers, Salt and Pepper, in line. As usual there is a pecking order, so the smaller steer, Pepper, comes last. Why do Cattle Egrets prefer cattle to horses? Clancy does often have […]

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Diamonds for breakfast

July 7, 2016
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As I’ve never been one for expensive jewellery, the ephemeral gems that nature offers now and then are quite enough to send me into raptures. They are only visible when the night dew has been caught by them, the sun’s light catches them in turn, and I awake in time to catch the sight of […]

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Sandstone surprises

June 14, 2016
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Visiting the Brisbane Water National Park on the NSW Central Coast, I was struck by the determination of trees to survive. The acrobatic and colourful trunks of Angophora Costata (Sydney Blue Gum) caught my eye most, forcing their way out between slabs of sandstone and twisting their way upwards as needed — or fancied. I […]

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