Banksia

The Banksia is a native Australian tree or bush. The following three images illustrate perfectly the life of the flower spike which is much sort after as a food source by nectarivorous animals, including birds, bats, rats, possums, stingless bees and a host of invertebrates. The flowers are also of an economic importance to the Australian nursery and flower industry.

These images were taken at the Geelong Botanic Gardens in autumn. The first photograph shows the flower in its perfect state.

The flower spike of a Banksia

The flower spike of a Banksia

The next image shows a flower spike after it has been visited by a nectar seeking bird or other animal.

This flower spike shows distinctive signs of being visited by nectar seeking animals.

This flower spike shows distinctive signs of being visited by nectar seeking animals.

And, finally, a flower spike which has no, or very little, nectar left to share.

A flower spike with no nectar left.

A flower spike with no nectar left.

Please Note: All photographs appearing on my blog were taken by me. They are copyrighted and all rights are reserved. If you would like to purchase a print please contact me by leaving a comment below with your order and contact details. I will then get back to you.

Colac Bird Reservation

I have just returned from the Colac Bird Reservation. On my arrival the sun had already risen  and the birds were having an early morning feed.

It is going to be another day of extreme heat here in Australia, and in my part of the country we are all on bush and grass fire alert. It is also the anniversary of Black Saturday when 173 lives were lost and 2079 homes were destroyed. On that Saturday there were up to 400 individual fires burning in the sate of Victoria.

Early morning at the Bird Reservation.

Early morning at the Bird Reservation.

Please Note: All photographs appearing on my blog were taken by me. They are copyrighted and all rights are reserved. If you would like to purchase a print please contact me by leaving a comment below with your order and contact details. I will then get back to you.

 

Mystery Solved!

I had my suspicions, but yesterday afternoon I got the (photographic) proof! The fruit from my Crab Apple tree has been disappearing and it appears it is a favourite of the Crimson Rosellas which visit my garden.

Juvenile Rosella enjoys a Crab Apple.

Juvenile Rosella enjoys a Crab Apple.

Now I'll have that one down there!

Now I’ll have that one down there!

Please Note: All photographs appearing on my blog were taken by me. They are copyrighted and all rights are reserved. If you would like to purchase a print please contact me by leaving a comment below with your order and contact details. I will then get back to you.

 

Superb Fairy-wren #2

In a previous post I showed some images of a pair of Superb Fairy-wrens (Malurus cyaneus) which were visiting my kitchen window and feeding on any insects they could find. In those photos the male was not yet showing his breeding colours.

The latest photo taken this morning shows the male in his full breeding colours.

Superb Fairy-wrens - the male is now in full breeding colours

Superb Fairy-wrens – the male is now in full breeding colours

Please Note: All photographs appearing on my blog were taken by me. They are copyrighted and all rights are reserved. If you would like to purchase a print please contact me by leaving a comment below with your order and contact details. I will then get back to you.

Feral Pigeon

The Rock Dove (Columba livia) is more commonly known as the Feral Pigeon here in Australia. It will be found mainly in urban areas living on city buildings and flocks of pigeons will be seen along the roadways and railway lines.

Rock Dove or Feral Pigeon

Rock Dove or Feral Pigeon

The plumage of the Feral Pigeon is variable but has a basic pattern of blue-grey with a glossy sheen on the neck. Its wings are black with a chequered pattern, or two black wing bars.

Rock Dove

Rock Dove

These birds grow to about 33 centimetres in size.

Rock Dove

Rock Dove

Please Note: All photographs appearing on my blog were taken by me. They are copyrighted and all rights are reserved. If you would like to purchase a print please contact me by leaving a comment below with your order and contact details. I will then get back to you.

Superb Fairy-wren

For the past two weeks this pair of Superb Fairy-wrens have kept me entertained as they gather insects from the kitchen window.

Superb Fairy-wrens (Malurus cyaneus) are small birds of 14 centimetres in length. I have taken many photos of them over the past fortnight and I would like to share my favourites with you.

Male Superb Fairy-wren

Male Superb Fairy-wren

Superb Fairy-wren

Female Superb Fairy-wren

Superb Fairy-wren, Malurus cyaneus, Barongarook West, Victoria, Australia

Taking time out from eating. Time to get to know each other a little better.

Superb Fairy-wren

The female Superb Fairy-wren – having a good look for some lunch.

Superb Fairy-wren

Taking some more time out!

Please Note: All photographs appearing on my blog were taken by me. They are copyrighted and all rights are reserved. If you would like to purchase a print please contact me by leaving a comment below with your order and contact details. I will then get back to you.

Great Crested Grebe

The Great Crested Grebe (Podiceps cristatus) is an Australian native water bird which will be found in deep freshwater ponds, open wetlands, and coastal saltwater areas. It is carnivorous and dives underwater to catch fish. It will also dive underwater to escape danger.

It has distinctive characteristic markings, which include:  long pointed bill and red eyes. Its upper body is dark brown while the under parts are white. When breeding it has a crest or tuft of black feathers on top of the head and red-brown ruff of feathers around the neck. In non-breeding birds the ruff and tufts are greatly reduced or absent, particularly in winter.

Its body is up to 50 centimetres in length. Its race in Australia is australis.

The Great Crested Grebe pairs in breeding season on fresh water with aquatic and marginal vegetation.

The Great Crested Grebe pairs in breeding season on fresh water with aquatic and marginal vegetation.

This particular bird was swimming on Barongarook Creek a freshwater creek which flows into Lake Colac which is brackish water. It was diving constantly for food and seemed undeterred by human activity on the creek bank.

Here, the bird had swum under a footbridge over the creek, enabling me to capture its image.

Here, the bird had swum under a footbridge over the creek, enabling me to capture its image close up.

Please Note: All photographs appearing on my blog were taken by me. They are copyrighted and all rights are reserved. If you would like to purchase a print please contact me by leaving a comment below with your order and contact details. I will then get back to you.