Jen and Esther

Yes we have chooks, Austropoles. Our two fat ladies get a new lease on life after several years at a small school farm.
They were very over weight obviously surviving on school lunches.
No one is sure how old they are some even suggested they were around 7 to 13 years!
both had severe scaly foot which we've managed to control with vegetable oil foot baths!
Jen lays the most eggs and Esther every 3 days or so.
You'll be seeing lots of chook photos in the months to come!

 Jen and Esther when they first arrived, one frosty winters day

 Jen from up high on her coup, watching us in the garden
She's not happy! We've had to fence off the whole garden not just from the hens but from the native animals


A prickly customer

You have to get down on to the same ground level and have plenty of patience when photographing an echidna. They could be the same echidna the top photo was taken a couple of months earlier on our property.


BillyBob's Story


My partner first found Billy Bob when he was just an egg! The parents, see photos below, had made a little nest in our little almond tree.  The egg hatched and not before to long the little bird had grown some feathers and was becoming very vocal, unfortunately the nest didn't last, as the winds during this time of year, January, are very extreme. the nest blew apart and The little fledgling was on the ground bopping about and his parents were very anxious flying back and forth around him and making lots of noise. We tried to repair the nest and pop the little one back in but the wind and rain was so fierce that it wasn't long before the chick was blown back out again. Fortunately for him we found him quickly before a large goanna that was lurking under the tree found him!
We took the little chick inside and rang for advice on how to raise a baby gold finch. Soon we had the right food and information and over the months this little guy endeared himself in our hearts and our visitors hearts.
 My partner named him Billy Bob..not sure why, but it seemed to fit! It was so amazing to watch this tiny little bird grow and mature, how his feathers changed colour, how his flying maneuvers improved and  the most astonishing thing was his ability to mimic our whistle and the whistling of other birds he heard outside.
He really had the run of the whole house. We had always planed to let him go one day but he seemed to be so dependent on us, well so we thought...it just took one second of lack in concentration one morning with the door just opened and out flew Billy Bob...I was devastated, I watched him speechless and tried top call him back but he kept on flying off into the distance, I watched him till he disappeared. To this day I still think that he visits us and sometimes I hear a little bird wolf whistling in the distance. If he is still out there I'm sure he would have taught other Gold finches several new whistling tunes!


This evening

I am pretty sure that these European Golden Finches are the same pair that played in my garden this morning! In fact I don't believe they even left. Probably wondering what happened to all the ripe cherries and taking note of the raspberries that should be ready for picking in a week or two!

Much better photos this evening, I was able to get pretty close to them, 3 meters away! It's funny how they stare at you, he looks very suspicious!
Tomorrow I''ll try and get up early to take a walk down to the Jordan river that runs nearby, there are lots more smaller birds, swamp harriers and cootes out and about!