25 February 2014

Ocean walk yesterday

Central Coast, Soldiers Beach; it was around 28 degrees celcius.

I'm not exactly sure, but I only know the green weed as kelp; I'm sure it's got a different name though.  Do you know it?

Top right, would love to know what this is called also.  It looks really pretty, almost coral-like, after the tide has rolled out.  Later notation added:  On good authority from Maggie S, it's Coralline Algae.  Maggie writes "it is home to hundreds of little animals (except after it gets ripped out by storms and dumped on the beach I suppose).  Thanks Maggie!

Lower right, it's a Cuttle-fish "shell" rather like a back-bone structure, and is great for caged birds as a form of calcium.

'sitting-up' style of para-gliding; a little different from the norm'

watch out for these Blue-bottle Jellyfish when walking along the sand, and don't tread on one!  Their sting is poisonous, and painful.

a closer look at the pretty one!

Sharing with Nature Notes

22 February 2014

Sssssh... and listen to nature

..that was what the sign had read at the beginning of The Spring Creek Walk at Buchan Caves.  During a road-trip to Victoria, this had been another fabulous spot on the map, 817 km. from home, to stop a while, stretch the legs, fresh air ... and explore.

Down in the gully you could hear the fascinating variety of calls from a Superb Lyrebird.  And, had I managed a decent photo of it, I could've posted this over on my Snap Happy Birding blog!  I really am trying to separate the two, a birding-blog there, and whatever else, here.

Even though this was way back in 2007, the memories haven't faded, and as we'd walked along the Kanooka Track, the lush green mosses suggested it was a magical place.

15 February 2014

Historic Shipwrecks of Homebush Bay

No luxury cruise-liners when I ventured down to the big city this week; instead, shipwrecks!

Seen at Homebush Bay, alongside Sydney's Olympic Park, all 430 hectares of it.

The mangroves have just grown up through the disintegrated bottom of the wreck.  No doubt, given time, the mangroves will ultimately win over.  Why should I envisage this as a blue-ribbon winner at 2014 Chelsea Garden Show?  It's certainly out performs the ship-in-a-bottle, being more a landscape in a ship.

No doubt many estuary birds make good use of this rustic island.

it's a little hard to discern, but I tried to fit all the shipwreck in; look to the right and you can just make out another 'end'.

save your eyes ...  the signage reads ....

Homebush Bay became a ship-breaking yard in 1966.  At least four ship hulls and several barges are still there, protected under the Historic Shipwrecks Act 1976.  The wrecks seen here are the SS Heroic and HMAS Karangi, closest to the mangroves.

SS Heroic was a steel-hulled, steam tugboat, 268 tonnes and 38.10m long, built in the UK in 1909 for Thomas Fenwick, tugboat operator, Sydney.  In 1911 it towed the French warship Eure' to Sydney from Noumea for breaking up.  It was later commandeered by the British Admiralty for rescue work during the Fist World War.  

During the Second World War it rescued the freighter Allara after it was torpedoed off Sydney.  Heroic was stationed at Newcastle for the last 20 years of its life and was finally hulked at Homebush Bay around 1973.

HMAS Kurangi was a steel boom defence vessel, 971 tons, 54.25m long, built at Cockatoo Docks, Sydney 1941.  These ships have long 'booms' projecting from the bows and rounded sterns which help lay the nets, booms, buoys and submarines.  Karangi helped defend Darwin Harbour from Japanese attack in 1942.  It was partially scrapped in 1965 and abandoned in Homebush Bay sometime later.

Snap Happy Birding shares the White Ibis seen near this location.  I hope you'll 'pop on over' for a birds-eye view.

08 February 2014


Went out to a nearby setting where kangaroos live free, this week. In comparison to snapping birds, getting a sweet shot of a kangaroo, is easy-street.

07 February 2014


from a few tiny cuttings sent to me by post in spring, these small plants are slowly gathering pace now, and a few flowering heads to photograph.  

I suspect that after the summer heat, in the perfect Autumn months ahead, that the Pentas' will really put on a good growth spurt.

I should even be able to take cuttings myself then and be able to propagate more of the same.