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Film Diary / 30.06.2009

I spoke to Lenore Thiele the other day to find out if she had made any progress identifying a most unusual fungus I filmed in the rainforest and she mentioned that she had seen pademelons (the smallest kangaroo-like marsupials) grazing on the lawn of a house next to Palm Grove National Park. Sure enough, when I had a look yesterday some pademelons were there. Today I had my camera with me and filmed pademelons on the lawn and in the bush land adjoining the house. The people renting the house told me that they had counted as many as 17 pademelons on the property at one time. Although you can frequently hear pademelons in the park, you have to be very lucky to film any (see Film Diary 11 February), so I’ll make a point of returning to the house.

(PS 5 July)

I have now accumulated about 90 minutes of pademelon footage, including some of a young joey poking its head out of its mother’s pouch.

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Film Diary / 12.06.2009

I set up my camera to film the usual birdbath in the Wild Garden this afternoon. Activity was intermittent, but during the last flurry, a Rose Robin appeared frame left and after splashing about for maybe 20 seconds or so, (I haven’t seen the footage yet) flew off frame right. This was another new species for the archive.

 

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Film Diary / 12.05.2009

After meagre spoils night filming in Joalah National Park, usually the most reliable source of subjects, Jaap and I agreed to resume filming in early October. Other than the ever-abundant birds, little is stirring among the Mountain’s fauna in late Autumn and Winter. Indeed our previous foray a fortnight ago in MacDonald National Park was unique in that for the first time in over 18 months I found nothing worth filming. However, I was still able to film a moth on the garage in Central Avenue today.

 

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Film Diary / 24.04.2009

For over a year I had been after Lenore Thiele, a retired ecologist, to let me film her digging up a fungus, to reveal more about its constituent parts. Naturally she was reluctant to dig in the National Parks, but today she told me about a suitable specimen near her house. When I called round ready to film, she showed me some fungi in her garden and I told her that they would make good subjects, so she dug and I filmed. It was just as well that we took the opportunity, because the fungus she had in mind, a far bigger specimen, had been damaged and it was located under a hedge, which would have made filming far more difficult if not impossible.

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Film Diary / 16.04.2009

A varied day which included a frustrating attempt to film a couple of Scaly Breasted Lorikeets near my home. Once common, these birds have become a rarity, usurped by the Rainbow Lorikeet. That night I filmed the release into the rainforest of a couple of Carpet Pythons which had been captured on Mountain properties.

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Film Diary / 31.03.2009

An excellent day. In the morning I filmed Wollumbinia dorsii, a newly recognised species of fresh-water turtle, named by its discoverer after herpetologist Marcus Dorse of Tamborine Mountain, a friend of mine. The footage was shot in Marc’s garden and includes him holding the turtle. Later on, I filmed a Graceful Tree Frog on the library window in North Tamborine and a stunning insect on the adjoining Westpac Bank window.

The day got better, because that night in the Knoll National Park, I filmed a spectacular moth, a Giant Panda Snail – they are huge – and a Brushtail Possum. The possum was clinging to a tree, only a couple of metres above the ground and remained there for a long time looking at us looking at it.  I was able to get some good close-ups of its tail and its paws. Eventually it leaped to an adjacent tree and my view of it was partly obscured by vegetation. Fortunately I managed to zoom onto its pointed nose, at the end of which a large drip formed which duly succumbed to the effects of gravity. As we were nearing the exit, Jaap told us… Read Complete Text

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Film Diary / 26.03.2009

Six days ago I paused on my morning walk to talk to some people I know who happened to be at their front gate, which is set back from the road, when my gaze was directed to the presence of several moths clustered around a pair of lamps on either side of the double garage door. The lamps remain on all night. I was gob-smacked. I had passed this garage most mornings for years on end and hadn’t noticed a single moth until that morning’s chance conversation. Many of the moths were tiny and could not be noticed from the street, but some were large enough to be clearly seen. For several days since, I have filmed an assortment of beautiful moths in greater numbers than at the shopping centre in North Tamborine, my erstwhile stamping ground for gathering moths. A couple of days ago I even filmed a fair sized Titan Stick Insect. It doesn’t bear thinking about the moths I have missed over the years at this location.

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Film Diary / 17.03.2009

When I started night filming I may have shot five minutes or less of footage during a two hour walk. Now, the amount of footage has doubled. Tonight in the Knoll National Park, I was able to film a couple of Brushtail Possums. Our previous encounters with possums in the rainforest had been too brief for filming. The second possum was particularly endearing as it waited in a branch high overhead until I had finished filming two spiders on the tree’s trunk.

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Film Diary / 25.02.2009

Another night filming session in Joalah, which yielded plenty of delights, not least because we had the alert presence of a young woman, who spotted a number of good subjects, the most unexpected of which was a Titan Stick Insect. It was a medium-sized specimen. The insects can grow to a length of 250mm. However, the truly exceptional sight was a roosting Azure Kingfisher on a branch above the self-same pool where I filmed the eel. The bird was a new species for the archive.

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Film Diary / 11.02.2009

There was a time, lasting many years, when, much to my disappointment, I failed to see any pademelons – a small marsupial related to the wallaby – on my visits to Palm Grove National Park, where they had been common. However, for the past few years they have been present in numbers, not only near the entrance, but deep within the park. They are skittish creatures. If you don’t manage to see them you can hear them pounding the ground as they bound out of danger. Today, I managed to film a pademelon who had not retreated out of sight, but had paused to watch me from a safe distance. I was able to set up my camera to give me a clear view. After several minutes of the pademelon looking at me filming, it was gone. Filming it was a pure bonus as I was in the park to add to my footage of tangled and knotted vines.