15 September, 2012 by talungatales
Surprises are my favourite thing. Not necessarily surprises you get from other people but more than anything, the surprises of nature. Having grown up in the city you don’t really get exposed to animals in their natural habitat. Not unless you include things like mice, rats, cats and dogs. Or feral bird populations like sparrows and blackbirds. I remember the first time I saw a Kookaburra on the neighbours roof in the city, it totally blew me away as I never realised how blue the band is on their wings, or how big they are. Kookaburras are quite common in our garden and I never get bored with watching them. They’re like the clowns of the bird family.
We’ve been living in our country residence for about 9 years and in that time we’ve had a few surprises. The first was when we found a rather large Echidna in a paddock. She must have been about 30cm in diameter if not a bit larger and was carrying a puggle (a baby echidna). We later found out that Echidna’s are a bit of a rarity, and we were very lucky indeed to find one with a puggle in her pouch.
In 2010 after a number of years of drought, a large flock of Ibis took residence in our paddocks. They were wild and not used to humans, and at a guess had come down from the Murray River regions in search of more water and food. They were majestic to watch. Sadly though Ibis are moving into residential areas where they’re getting a reputation as ‘garbage scavengers’.
The most exciting discovery we’ve had was finding a Koala in one of our trees a couple years ago. They’re not that common in these parts, but have been known to move about when food supplies get low. Being nocturnal and spending most of their time high in the trees, they’re not the sort of animals you just ‘stumble’ across. The OH had been working in the workshop when he heard a rather strange noise in the late afternoon. At first he thought it was a motor bike on the neighbours property but it just didn’t sound right. On further investigation this is what he found:
I love her white ‘ruffle’. My son has only seen one other Koala since, so it’s possible they may be moving into our scrub patch.
Of course there are other exciting moments like when roos decide to graze on the front lawn. They’re very shy and nervous and will bound away at the slightest sound. A small mob of about 3-6 inhabit the area around our house and it’s lovely to watch them, especially the joeys. We have a dog so it’s not often wildlife come right up to the house but on occasion a rabbit or hare runs past the window, a fox sneaks up the driveway, a frog is found in the dogs waterbowl, or a snake is found somewhere closeby (hopefully not in the house again). It all adds to the excitement of life in the country. Thank goodness we have large windows – it’s better than watching the TV.