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  Friday, 26 June 2009

Tui on flax flower

11:19:47 PM    Comment []

  Thursday, 30 October 2008

Tui feeding on Kowhai nectar

Tui on Kowhai tree

Tui & Kowhai


8:44:01 PM    Comment []

  Sunday, 27 July 2008

Fantail by the river

This little fellow spent most of yesterday afternoon feeding on tiny flying insects down by the river in front of my house. He would perch of the same dead branch bent out over the water, watching and waiting for his prey. Occasionally he would dart off and pluck an insect, almost to small to detect with human eyes, from the air in mid flight. Fantails are incredible aviators and almost impossible to photograph in the air. Because of their speed, agility, and unpredictable flight paths, I've taken thousands of photos of empty airspace trying. I clicked off ninety frames within a matter of minutes trying with this one. One day I'll fluke it.

9:24:49 AM    Comment []

  Sunday, 2 September 2007

I've been pottering around the garden this morning. Not really doing much in the way of planting or anything (to early here, we're still getting frosts), but rather planning what I'll plant, when, and where. My garlic crop is well under way, the raspberrys and black current are starting to bud, and last years rhubarb has just poked it's head up through the pea-straw again.

The tree lucerne on the river bank is covered with lost of fresh young shoots the the native pigeons are enjoying.


11:17:30 AM    Comment []

  Saturday, 12 May 2007

Toutouwai - New Zealand Robin - Petroica australis

Toutouwai is a fearless little bird, bolder even than the Fantail. They will fly within an arms reach and are even known to perch on a persons head of shoulder. I have still found it challenging to get good shots of this species however because I usually come across them in the deepest darkest parts of the NZ bush where the light for photography of fast moving, dark coloured birds is not the best.

11:16:11 AM    Comment []

  Saturday, 23 December 2006

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This little fellow visited my garden this afternoon, just to have his portrait taken. He sat and waited paitently while I changed to my 300mm lens to get some nice closeups. Stoats are a real problem for New Zealands delicate eco-system. Our birds, particularly the flightless ones, have developed no defense to predators like this one, having evolved in an environment without them. They and their eggs are easy prey for the highly evolved stoat. Now that I know this one is hanging around the area, I should set a trap for him, for the sake of the local birds. I hate having to do that to any creature, especailly one so handsome. I wish I could just rehabilitate him or something.
Can you spot the little guy in the picture below?

1:39:50 PM    Comment []

  Friday, 8 December 2006

9:23:34 PM    Comment []

  Saturday, 21 October 2006

9:57:29 PM    Comment []

  Saturday, 7 October 2006

The garden is really coming to life now. I've got a few plants in (lettuce, beans, silver beet or swiss chard, cauliflower, brocoli, potatoes) and they are doing well, but it's the bird life really makes it feel like the growing season again. The kingfishers are back in the poplar tree by the back door, and their call is now the first sound I hear each morning. They'll probably nest in the same hole in the tree trunk that they had chicks in last year. Such shy and wary birds. This year I may even build a hide to photograph them from. Its the only way I'll get close enough for a good shot.

This morning a native pigeon, Kereru, was posing in the plum tree when I drew the curtains. I'm sure he was just waiting to have his portrait taken. He sat there while I made a coffee, grabbed my camera, walked out to the front lawn, took a few shots, then just after I turned to walk away again, he took off; probably up the hill to find some morning sun that was now creeping down the walls of the valley.

8:29:11 AM    Comment []

  Wednesday, 27 September 2006

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8:35:08 PM    Comment []

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