We regularly hear the beautiful trilling of the Fan-tailed Cuckoo, but it is nearly impossible to see! It stays quite still in the trees, and blends in so well. Finally, after hearing one outside the kitchen window for a few days we finally found it and could take a picture.
The black cockatoos visit McCarthy Park regularly, both the red tailed and white tailed, and they never cease to impress with their noise and size! Usually it is quite small flocks that come by, but occasionally we get a very big flock like this one. Check out our post on Instagram here! Or on Facebook here
The Carnaby’s Black- cockatoo is endangered, so we are thrilled they feel at home here, even if it is only for short visits.
The warmer summer weather brings a lot of native insect activity, particularly the many native bees we get here in Western Australia. We have seen quite a few different kinds over the years, blue banded bees, resin bees, leaf cutter bees and these masked bees. Today, I set the camera on a tripod n front of the latest bee hotel, pressed record and returned 15 minutes later to find the top hole completely sealed. The video is amazing, really showing the perseverance of this small insect (it is alas too big to post, so a snippet of the end is all that we can post).
Video of masked bee sealing nest
Over the years we have seen the circular holes made by the leafcutter bee, but for the first time we had the camera on hand and photographed this amazing native bee in action making a nest inside a hole in the mortar between the bricks of our house. the location is a surprise, as it is right by the spade and tap that we use regularly in our front garden!
It was a fascinating process to watch! It took about 5-10 minutes to source and cut the leaf (not sure where from as it seemed to fly over the house). This is despite a rose bush being right next too it, which is often used and had some of the tell tale circular holes cut in it already. Once it entered the nest, it took about a minute or two before it flew back out.
It is wonderful to see a variety of native birds on our property- and always exciting to see something new, especially when it is a bird we have heard many times but just could not see it! The Fan-tailed Cuckoo is one of those! It has a very distinctive call, so was easily identifiable….. but it always went quiet when we started to get close enough to see it! Well, finally we saw one- and managed a photo!
It has been pretty busy here at McCarthy Park lately. We have had one bush fire already and have spent a fair bit of time doing more fire proofing, including getting some tree loppers in to help clear.
An entertaining aspect of the wildlife at present is the King skinks. We have always had a whole community of them in the rockery, and encourage them by giving some food now and then and keeping the dogs out of that area. We often have them in the roof space, and occasionally get quite energetic and run around.
this year, they have added a few kamikaze dives from either the eaves or the grape vines! Quite regularly we here a THUD and look out to see a skink on the ground!
We have had such an abundance of birds lately- particularly the Splendid wrens. They are so comfortable with us being quite close- the only trouble with photographing them is they flit so quickly!!
There have been more birds visit our place lately, so we must be doing something right for the environment! It was fabulous to be able to photograph the elusive Red-capped Parrot (below)!