The unmistakable rusty and incessant whinging of a young Yellow-tailed Cockatoo came floating in my kitchen window. I followed the sound to a twin stump, where the ‘baby’ was atop one and the mother was at work in the fork of the other, ripping away bark with her beak. The young of these big Black […]

Here on the mid north coast hinterland of New South Wales it’s been feeling like the subtropics: storms, showers, searingly hot spells and perpetually high humidity. Not pleasant, unless you are plant life, for whom it’s boom time. To beat the heat, I get up very early — and so often begin the day with […]

The Crimson Rosellas are the main parrot here, but they aren’t always in as much evidence as they’ve been lately. A group of five has been hanging about together, perching close by each other, if not all in the same tree.  Three were quite enough for this young Red Cedar, especially as the recent shower […]

As I rarely put bird seed in my makeshift feeder, the Crimson Rosellas just keep their eye on it.  As the weather gets colder, I notice the wallabies are eating plants they’d previously left alone when the growth of grass and preferred plants was lush. Feed is getting scarce. This morning one Rosey landed on […]

I had been worried about the aberrant, non-fruit pinching behaviour of the seasonal fruit-pinching birds like the King Parrots and the Bower Birds. They had allowed me cherries, mulberries, figs and peaches — as they never had before. But then last week normality returned, as the King Parrots squawked  and gorged in the tall and […]

The King Parrots have arrived in all their green and scarlet glory, as raucous and belligerent as ever. This means that some of my orchard’s fruit must be close to ready for ruination, even though small and green. No time for netting this year, so the Kingies and the bower birds will have their best […]

Usually the parrots and I share the crop from my two large Nashi pear trees. I get hundreds of fruit from the lower branches and they take even more hundreds from the higher ones. Nashis ripen well off the tree so I can pick them when big enough, but not quite ripe, and layer them […]

I was visiting a friend’s house in bushland in the lower Hunter. Her small grand-daughter was also visiting, so a child-sized table was set up on the back patio. Large Lego kept her amused. My friend had fed the King Parrots there for a long time but the white cockatoos had begun to dominate, so […]

One of the Crimson Rosellas brought her young one along to try the birdseed recently. It was the first time I’ve seen this happen. Instead of the mature red, blue and black plumage, its blue was paler, its red more tomato than scarlet, and much of its body was dusted with light lettuce green. It […]

It’s easy to see when the predominant native grass in my `lawn’ is seeding, because the yard is taken over by a purposeful band of crimson rosellas. They proceed en masse up the slope, through thin grass as tall as themselves. Standing on one leg, each daintily grasps a seedhead stem with the claw of […]

With temperatures veering from 13 to 35 degrees, neither the fauna nor the flora know what’s going on here. The snakes don’t know whether to hibernate or hunt, I’ve had to bring out the winter woollies, the autumn crocus are blooming and the ornamental grapevine began changing into its autumn colours only halfway through summer, […]

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