In July we went to the Abbey Museum Medieval Tournament, a yearly event on the Sunshine Coast, north of Brisbane. I lived in a SCA (Society for Creative Anachronism, a re-enactment society) household in Sydney, although I wasn’t a member, and it was fun to watch medieval sparring in the backyard on weekends. I was curious to see how such groups had progressed since then.
I’m also keen on archaeology and this kind of qualified – there’s an art and archaeology museum on the grounds. There wasn’t much non-human natural history, but I’ll start off with that and progress to human behaviour later.
Animals present were greyhounds (with a re-enactment group of ladies in period dress), horses (jousting), raptors and, of course, Homo ludens (‘playing man’).
Falconry as a sport is illegal in Australia, but there’s a group that raises trains raptors for film and TV. I had a chance to see raptors close up, instead of, in the case of peregrine falcons (Falco peregrinus), flashing by at a zillion miles and hour. I saw a wild peregrine once flying along the cliffs south of Sydney, and it went past faster than my head could turn. I saw it later flying more slowly, enabling me to identify it but still not take its photo.
I was not expecting to see a barn owl. We have them at our place but I don’t see them this close up. Lovely markings!
The rest of the photos are of humans in play mode … there were 37 re-enactment groups, and many members of the public had put a lot of effort into dressing up, too.
Part 2 is here.