Author Archives: Joy Window

Sacred kingfisher

The Ballina Bar can produce some mighty waves – that’s why there are so many signs for boaties on their way out and way back, and where Marine Rescue is situated. Sunday was no exception – blustery, rainy and the … Continue reading

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A bower for the lady

It’s the time of year when birds go a’courting. I noticed a female satin bowerbird (Ptilonorhynchus violaceus), and then a male, in the backyard this morning. I’d never seen the two of them together so was interested to watch their … Continue reading

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The giant spear lily

Sometimes you walk past something and don’t even recognise it – that’s often the case with me and plants. I don’t know as much as I’d like – and the more I know, the more I realise I don’t know … Continue reading

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Bizarre bezoars

Humans are generally a superstitious lot. Take the case of the bezoars displayed in our local museum, where I volunteer a couple of days a week. The provenance of the largest one is: ‘Ball found in stomach of horse 1885: … Continue reading

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Flash! Aaaah!

Cue Queen’s theme music from “Flash Gordon” and replace the zooming spaceships in that film with fireflies! Firefly season started a couple of weeks early this year and lasts only for a fortnight or so each year. It’s lovely to … Continue reading

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A study in contrast

The weather has warmed up and snakes are on the move. Here on Bundjalung Country, late July and August are called ‘Coming Out Season‘: Getting dryer and can be strong winds, first hint of northerly winds. Birds starting to sing … Continue reading

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The introduced Mexican beetle

This pretty little beetle was in the backyard last week. I couldn’t find it in my reference books or on the ‘net so I asked the ever-helpful Queensland Museum, who identified it as the parthenium or Mexican beetle, Zygogramma bicolorata. … Continue reading

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The reptile and the monotreme

I heard the first boobook of the season the other night, and the first cicada. The mulberry tree’s leaves are growing back, and the whipbirds are going nuts with their call-and-response mating calls. Some frogs are even calling, and soon … Continue reading

Posted in Animals on land, echidnas, Lizards | Tagged , | 4 Comments

A tale of two herons

The Pacific reef heron (Egretta sacra) and the white-faced heron (Egretta novaehollandiae) are both commonly seen on Australia’s east coast. This reef heron at Ballina was the dark morph – they also come in white. It was busy searching for … Continue reading

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The swamp rat

Sometimes it is educational to see a dead body, and sometimes it is just sad. I found this native swamp rat (Rattus lutreolus) at the front of my house. The body was very fresh and just the head had been … Continue reading

Posted in Animals on land, Uncategorized | Tagged | 7 Comments