Logo

Other / 30.03.2020

During the weekend I completed a questionnaire about, inter alia, my project, why I came to Australia and a day in the life of Peter Kuttner, for a local filmmaker who contacted me via mutual friends. She graduated from film school a few years ago and is putting in a submission to a funding body charged with commissioning a short documentary about inspirational older Australians (not that I consider myself to be one). Is my age catching up with me? We will see what happens.

Logo

Other / 21.02.2020

Ever since the removal of a large tree and adjoining vegetation from one side of the drive, I have bemoaned the absence of abundant moths at the garage, though other factors, such as the prolonged drought, have played a far greater part than the missing vegetation. Since Christmas, we have enjoyed frequent rain, which has revived gardens and trees and filled water courses and rainwater tanks. The drought was such that the grass didn’t grow and the stressed trees covered the ground, including the forest floor, with their shed leaves. But  moth numbers at the garage were slow to reflect the rainfall. Today, there were more than I recall ever having seen. Overwhelmingly, they were small, pale brown geometrids. Numbers flew off as I approached to take photos. The night had been warm and humid, as had previous nights with a good showing of moths, but nothing remotely like this.

 

Logo

Other / 05.02.2020

I am on the last day of a six day course of antibiotics to combat a mystery infection I picked up god knows when, god knows where.  Last Monday week I woke with a slight temperature which returned to normal the next day. The following morning, I felt a sharp pain on the shin bone of my left leg, but didn’t see anything untoward. Fortunately, I had a doctor’s appointment the day after. My GP confirmed that the leg was infected. There were small blood bursts below the skin and the leg was swollen. Last week’s pain had gone. I took the antibiotics but couldn’t see any change for 5 days. Because I am shortly due to have a cataract operation, I urgently wanted to see a doctor. My new appointment was for today at 11.30 am. The doctor confirmed that the infection had gone, but the swelling worried her so she sent me to have a scan for a blood clot in my lower left leg. For a few hours the implications were scary to contemplate, until the scan result proved to be clear. But some critter or vegetation had it in for me. The leg remains swollen…. Read Complete Text

Logo

Other / 10.12.2019

On my walk this morning I was startled by a crashing sound. Looking around I just caught sight of a kookaburra smashing into a hedge, emerging with a small, dark snake, wriggling in its beak. The bird flew onto a tree branch a short distance away, where I was able to observe it for several minutes. The snake tried to wrap itself around the bird’s head while held in the vice-like grip of the very large beak which is a distinguishing feature of the species. I eventually saw that the victim was a juvenile green tree snake. Adults can grow to a length of two metres. The bird suddenly flew to the ground in the garden next door, the better to overpower the snake by bashing it on the hard surface of the car port.

 

Logo

Other / 03.12.2019

As I set out on my morning walk, a fallen bunya pine cone stood out on the grass of the park opposite my unit. Just an hour before, for the first time in months, the grass had been cut. Otherwise the cone, large as it is, would not have been as visible. I have never known a cone to fall in December. Usually on the mountain, they fall in the second half of January and in February. A group of bunya pines graces the side of the road further along my route. Two of the trees grow on each side of a drive at whose entrance the property owner was adjusting a shade cloth. I told her about the cone in the park and she showed me three which she had found this morning. A very fierce wind blew all yesterday, which may have dislodged the cones. There are several other bunya pine trees in the park, yet I only saw the one cone. Because we are enduring a severe drought, all the vegetation is stressed. The trees are shedding leaves as never before and I suspect that is why the bunya pines have shed cones early in December…. Read Complete Text

Logo

Other / 16.09.2019

This morning I posted a USB with the latest 23 species videos and a corrected version of ‘The Rainforest at Night’, part 1, to the NFSA. The NFSA has the vast majority of my 568 videos on Vimeo, which are accessed on this site. Because I have been busy with my book, I haven’t filmed much since February, so it will take  a while for me to build up footage for further videos.

 

Logo

Other / 01.07.2019

Jeff Wray emailed me confirming the safe arrival of the USBs  with the latest batch of 125 species videos for the NFSA, bringing the total in their collection to 511 videos.

Logo

Other / 24.06.2019

Today, I sent Jeff Wray – senior curatorial officer, film, at the National Film & Sound Archive in Canberra – 3 USBs by registered post, filled with my third selection of HD species videos. It is two years since the previous offering.  The latest batch contains 125 videos to add to the NFSA’s  collection of my footage, which includes all 123 SD species videos. I need to send corrected footage of Supplement 4 of the Archive and the remaining 23 HD species videos on file, once Jeff returns the USBs.

Logo

Film Diary, Other / 21.06.2019

On my morning walk on the 17th, I photographed an unfamiliar spider enjoying the sun on a timber fence in Driscoll Lane. It turned out to be the smallest species of huntsman spider I have seen. Today, I photographed an obliging fly on a metal rail next to the fence. It was confirmed by an expert as a genus new to my album. Flies seem to like the rail, judging by the number I have photographed there.

Logo

Film Diary, Other / 19.06.2019

I wanted to film a giant vine in The Knoll National Park, which was hitching a ride to the canopy on an immense strangler fig tree, located near the bridge over Sandy Creek. I had measured the vine’s girth just above its base at 113 cm. Alas, both my batteries were flat, so I took my stills camera which made the going far easier, though I picked up a tiny grass tick, which lodged in my waste. I charged the batteries today and still plan to film the vine.