Monday, November 30, 2015

Pacific Baza Nesting

28th November 2015


Our neighbours have been watching this beautiful Pacific Baza (aka Crested Hawk) building it's messy nest high in an ironbark tree, right in front of their home over the last few weeks. The bird then progressed to sitting on the nest.  I went over to take some photos, which proved rather challenging.  The nest is well placed high in the tree, with plenty of foliage surrounding it to give good coverage.  There is no mistaking that crest and bright yellow eye though!. I must admit, I was surprised at the location of the nest, only metres from the house where large dogs live in the yard and just above where our neighbours visitors park their cars!  I always imagined they would choose a very secretive location!  More photos to come of the baza families progress.


Pacific Baza on it's nest - Kleinton, South East Qld, 28th Nov 2015

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Spotted Python in the Bird Aviary

28th November 2015


I noticed this Spotted Python (Antaresia maculosa) hiding in a container within the the storage cupboard of our bird aviary.  We are not sure how on earth it actually got in there in the first place, but Brendon re-located him under a hollow log in the garden nearby.  This is the second time we have had a small Spotted Python in the "snake proof" aviary! (see previous post from 2013 here)

J & B

Removing the Spotted Python (Antaresia maculosa) from the storage room

Spotted Python (Antaresia maculosa)

Spotted Python (Antaresia maculosa) returned to the wild.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Water Scorpion in the pool

15th November 2015

WATER SCORPION (Laccotrephes spp)

This Water Scorpion was observed in the swimming pool by our children. Master C took some photos of it on my phone to record the sighting, prior to catching it in a net and re-locating it to a waterhole in the creek.

C & J


The water scorpions are distinctive aquatic bugs that possess raptorial forelegs for capturing prey and a breathing siphon extending from the end of the abdomen.

Nepids are poor swimmers and prefer to wait in ambush for their prey with just the siphon extending through the surface of the water. Their prey consists of other aquatic organisms that come into their range, particularly small crustaceans and insects, though they will take tadpoles and small fish if presented with the opportunity.

The raptorial forelegs have an organ that apparently senses the vibrations of the prey, which combines with the use of visual clues to make the Nepidae formidable ambush predators.

WATER SCORPION (Laccotrephes spp) at Jarowair

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Spectacular Storms

14th November 2015


November saw some spectacular storms and some much needed rain on the Darling Downs.  This photo doesn't do the dark storm justice, but the little windmill was spinning so fast in the wind, I thought it was possible that it would spin right off and blow away!


The storm is coming... 14th November 2015

White-throated Gerygone building her nest

14th November 2015


Over the last week and a half, we have watched the size of this nest made of spider silk and grasses grow markedly in size.  The nest is hanging from very small branches on an ironbark tree at our patch.  We had noticed a little bird tending to the nest, but it has taken a week for us to get a good look at her.  Today, even though it was overcast and about to rain, I was able to get a few photos of this beautiful White-throated Gerygone (Gerygone albogularis), tending to the nest.  The little bird darted in and out with nesting material and kept re-arranging the nest.

It is three years since we have noticed a White-throated Gerygone nest here at Jarowair.  It is interesting to note that the tree chosen is only a few meters away from the gum tree that the birds have used in previous years.  (see Previous post from 2012 here).  

White-throated Gerygones are insect eaters and are common in south-eastern Australia.  They have a beautiful happy little trill sound and are most enjoyable to watch.  You can listen to the noise they make on the Birds in Backyards Website here

J & B
White-throated Gerygone (Gerygone albogularis) Nest
White-throated Gerygone (Gerygone albogularis) tending to the nest

White-throated Gerygone (Gerygone albogularis) in the same tree as the nest.

White-throated Gerygone Nest 13/11/15

Friday, November 13, 2015

Nocturnal White Crowned Snake

13th November 2015


The White-crowned Snake (Cacophis harriettae) is a quiet beautiful snake with a shimmery grey body colour like above and below with a cream stripe around the snout and neck area.  They grow to around 50cm in length and hunt at night for skinks and their eggs.  This one was found at our patch quietly moving around at night.  The last sighting we had of one here was of a dead juvenile found caught in a spider web in February 2014, and previous to that a live one in March 2013.  Such a beautiful snake!

B & J.

White-crowned Snake (Cacophis harriettae)

White-crowned Snake (Cacophis harriettae)

White-crowned Snake (Cacophis harriettae)

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Galah Acrobatics in the Rain

08th November 2015

Galah Acrobatics in the Rain at Jarowair

A heavy rainstorm in the middle of the day had us all heading inside.  As we stood in the kitchen, we noticed a pair of Galah's having a ball doing acrobatics on the end of a high tree branch in the rain. They were quite entertaining and I couldn't resist taking a few photos of them.  The photos are a bit dark and blurry due to the storm, but I had to add them anyway.  J.G.

This one is my favourite of the lot!

Wolf Spider in the day

08th November 2015

WOLF SPIDER (Lycosidae)

Wolf Spiders build burrows in the dry ground, some with trap doors some without. They are a nocturnal spider whose eyes have a reflective grate that shines up in a reflective blue colour under the torch light at night, almost like someone has sprinkled glitter over the lawn at times!  This one behaved well during the day at the entrance to it's hole, while I took some photos with the macro lens on.  

Wolf Spider (Lycosidae)

Wolf Spider (Lycosidae)

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Three Tawny Baby Fledglings

06th November 2015

Three Tawny Frogmouth Baby Fledglings at Jarowair

A couple of nights ago, just hours before a large rain storm, Brendon noticed that the Tawny Frogmouth babies had left the nest and moved to a nearby Ironbark tree with the parents.  We were quite worried about how they would go in the storm, and Brendon went to check on them after the rain finished and they were all okay.  Yesterday I went to take some photos and discovered, not two but three babies!  All this time we thought there were two, just like last year, but there had been one other hiding in that scrappy nest the whole time! 

It is interesting to note that they have relocated the babies to the very same tree that they used last year to relocate the fledgling pair that they raised.  Such cute little bundles they are.  I love this photo below showing the whole family, two parents and three bubs - they look so proud.

See past blog posts about this family here:

J & B.

Tawny Frogmouth Family at Jarowair 06/11/15 Three Fledgling Babies and Two Parents. 

Tawny Frogmouth Fledglings at Jarowair 06/11/15

Tiny Jumping Spider

06th November 2015

Tiny Jumping Spider at Jarowair

I am yet to get confirmation on the actual i.d. of this tiny Jumping Spider.  It was very fast moving and hard to get a photo of, but I had a lot of fun trying to get a few photos with the macro lens on. I love their eyes!  This one was around 4-5mm in length and a pale yellow colour.


Friday, November 6, 2015

Native Frogs are loving the November Rain

06th November 2015


The sounds coming from the water holes, in the creek, newly filled after a good amount of November Rain are deafening from the native frogs - but fantastic just the same.  There are plenty of species out and about. Here are just a few I managed to photograph during one night.  B.G.

Scarlet-sided Pobblebonk (Limnodynastes terraereginae)

Graceful Treefrog (aka Dainty Green Tree Frog) (Litoria gracilenta)

Ornate Burrowing-frog (Opisthodon ornatus)

Ornate Burrowing-frog (Opisthodon ornatus) Pair, making the  most of the wet season :)

Smooth Toadlet or Eastern Gungan (Uperoleia laevigata)

Emerald Spotted Tree Frog (Litoria peronii)

Pale Grass-Lily

06th November 2015

PALE GRASS-LILY (Caesia parviflora var. vittata)

The discovery of a new wildflower after good rain, is always exciting for me at Jarowair.  Over time I have fallen in love with every tiny little native flower at our patch, and finding new ones always continues to amaze me, how amazing nature is at recovering.

The discovery of one lone flower of the Pale Grass-Lily (Caesia parviflora var. vittata) was just by chance.  The top of the plant had been eaten by something and one flower remained.  Over the next few weeks, I watched the plant and further stems grew, with further beautiful flowers emerging.  I am so grateful my husband understands my love of wildflowers and allows me to let one particular area (that we normally mow), grow high over the spring/summer wildflower periods... otherwise I would never discover such delights.

Pale Grass-Lily (Caesia parviflora var. vittata) at Jarowair
Pale Grass-Lily

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Three-clawed Worm Skink

01st November 2015

Three Clawed Worm Skink (Aka Verreaux's Skink) (Anomalopus verreauxii)

This cutie was found today in the compost bin at Jarowair.  Verreaux's Skink or Three Clawed Worm Skink, because of their silly little legs with three claws.  

Three-Clawed Worm Skink (Aka Verreaux's Skink) (Anomalopus verreauxii)

I attempted to take a close-up of the tiny legs, but it is a little blurry, hard to hold a wriggling skink with one hand while taking a photo with the other.