Meldale in the dry

January 26, 2014

Meldale in the dry

It has been hot for the coast these last few weeks with only a few mm of rain.  The dams which rely on the water table are rapidly drying out although there is water in all the dams. 
We have had much fewer dragonflies and it is only this week that I have seen the first Australian Tiger and the first short-tailed duskdarter previously both have been sighted in early December. There are a few blue dragonflies (palemouths, blue skimmers and chalky perchers) guarding their patches on the dams about and the occasional red one ( red arrow, fiery skimmer and wandering perchers).
How do they know it is dry and not to hatch until there are plenty of insects, is it water temperature, the new fresh water that fills the dams that herald the wet arriving?
Even our local kookaburras have been enjoying a cooling dip the last few days. They have fledge their young already as have most of our sacred and forest king fishers.  We were lucky to have an azure kingfisher nest in the wall of one of our dams but they too were fledged before Christmas.

Our Pacific Baza or crested hawk pair are nesting, having checked out the collared sparrow hawk nest recently vacated, and attempted to tidy up their own nest for last year, they have opted for building a new nest in their old tree. It is a bit exposed so I am hoping to be able to photo the chick(s) in due course as they grow. This is now about the 4 th year from memory that we have had a nest and one year we had two sets of chicks raised.

Some days when you go for a walk the birds seem to want to show you their best pose especially for the camera and other days I can work the block without even taken a photo. Today we had a sacred kingfisher who hopped from one pose to another with a final look back as if to say “this is my best side”.

Jan 25th

Today I have seen the chicks from the Pacific Baza for the first time.  We have 2 at least. Our eaves have become home to 4 frogs.  I think they are laughing tree frogs but I am still waiting to have this verified. They have been there since Christmas but must go out at night to catch food.

Locations visited




Written by

Helen Leonard

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