Insect Whispering and Sour Plums – A Celebration of Native Species

“Every individual matters. Every individual has a role to play. Every individual makes a difference.”    Jane Goodall

I’ve recently returned from an attempt at hiking to the summit of Mt Maroon in Mt Barney National Park, south- southwest of Brisbane, but haven’t had time to write up a report. The attempt was “interesting.” It didn’t quite go to plan, but none of my long hikes ever seem to!  My hiking partner and I are alive which is the most important thing. Here are a couple of pictures of what is to come at a later date. Continue reading

Nerima Calling: A Partnership of Peace

 komorebi (Japanese) :  sunshine filtering through the leaves of a tree or trees.

I had a very different kind of story planned to share with you this week – a story about an Australian castle. A castle not inherited from royalty or a long line of wealthy ancestors but one built for the wife and child of a man who started his working life in a wool factory in Wales at the grand old age of nine years old. It’s the quintessential rags to riches story and like a good fairy tale, involves love, a long separation and an element of tragedy.

But since I haven’t yet received the copyright permission to share some of the pictures, I’ve pulled together a small collection of nature photographs from my weekend visit to Nerima Gardens in Ipswich, near Brisbane. Continue reading

A Platypus Quest: Six Mile Creek Discoveries

I have yet to see a platypus in the wild. I wonder how many Australians have. When I was told recently that a dead platypus had been found near Six Mile Creek in my local area, I had mixed feelings – excitement and surprise that they lived so close to me, and a little frustration and disappointment that a new supermarket complex and residential development being built right next to the creek may be responsible for their demise.

Since then I have headed down to the creek on a few occasions, hoping to catch sight of this unusual monotreme. I did come across some brown woolly animals and another rather hairy creature. The second species elicited a  screech  from me that was loud enough to bring the cricketers from the practice nets down to investigate. I was left a little red-faced by their concern. Not an uncommon occurrence for me, I can assure you. Continue reading

The Geese Have Gone and I Am Cheering: Sherwood Arboretum and Wetlands

Sherwood Arboretum Wetlands

Sherwood Arboretum Wetlands

Well, there has been some drama of late. A family member was struck by a car recently while cycling home from work. He was fortunate to survive the incident but now has injuries which will take about six months to heal.   The driver of the car was  at fault according to the police report and unfortunately this is not uncommon where I live. I’m quite disheartened by the car-centric culture in my country although there have been some improvements.

As Michael Reilly recently wrote in an article explaining 18 Reasons Why Registering Bicycles  is a Bad Idea, “Even among people who don’t ride for transport, a survey showed 60% would like to do so – but many say they are too scared.”  Yes, here in the Lucky Country, many of us are too scared to ride a bicycle. After a few close calls I have even curtailed my own cycling activity.

Now  let’s move onto something more cheerful… Continue reading