And the bush has friends to meet him, and their kindly voices greet him, In the murmur of the breezes and the river on its bars,
And he sees the vision splendid of the sunlit plains extended, And at night the wonderous glory of the everlasting stars.

Banjo Paterson (1889)

Friday, May 6, 2011

The Coots of Herdsman Lake

The autumn weather in Perth has been beautiful lately, with warm sunny days, blue skies and a smell of moisture in the air. The birding though had been a bit on the quiet side, with most of the waders gone and local birds silently going about their business.

I took a trip over to Herdsman Lake this week (after putting my XH A1 in at a repairer to hopefully get fixed), but again the birding was quiet over there. The main birds moving about and making noise were groups of coots, busily feeding on midges landing on some of the exposed mudflats.

Here's a video of such a group, enjoying the food and autumn sunshine.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Reptiles of Cue

The first birding trip to the Cue area this year was with my cousin, a few weeks before Easter . The weather had cooled down, but the autumn days were very warm (30+) and reptiles were still moving about. Here are some of the reptiles we recorded between Paynes Find and Cue (photos by Fred Coles).

Yellow-spotted Monitor (Varanus panoptes)

A beautiful big adult monitor

Lozenge-marked Dragon (Ctenophorus scutulatus). Mostly seen running along the ground in the mulga woodlands.

Is this a scutulatus?  Must be, but he was found hiding deep in a dead tree stump at Paynes Find.

And the colours were intense.

One of the common geckos in the area. A Gehyra variegata.

A wonderful Broad-banded Sand-swimmer (Eremiascincus richardsonii), found at Nallan Station.