Jewell Spider (Austracantha minax)


I have photographed the Jewell Spider or Six Horned Spider, or Christmas Spider (among other names for this creature) previously, showing the white spots on the upper body. This time I was able to photograph the underside of the spider.  The white and yellow dots indicate this is a female spider.  The male is smaller, … Continue reading Jewell Spider (Austracantha minax)

Parson’s Bands (Eriochilus cucullatus)


The first Orchids of Autumn are beginning to emerge.  On my walk today I found four Parson’s Bands Orchids in different locations.  All were slightly off the beaten track, but not so far that I couldn’t see them while walking on a track.  All were growing beneath the shelter of a larger plant.  Two of … Continue reading Parson’s Bands (Eriochilus cucullatus)

An Eerie Light


Last week we experienced a heat wave in Victoria, with highest-ever temperatures being recorded in some locations.  The intense heat led to many fires across the entire State, resulting in a smoke-filled atmosphere.  Fanned by strong wind, the smoke drifted for hundreds of kilometers.  For a few hours on Friday afternoon, while it drifted across … Continue reading An Eerie Light

Marbled Xenica (Geitoneura Klugii)


For months now, it has puzzled me why so many butterflies hover low to the ground above bark and leaf litter, and in thick grassy areas with no flowers in sight.  I’ve always associated butterflies with flowers.  Thanks to a wonderful book given to me by my sister for Christmas, I can now answer that … Continue reading Marbled Xenica (Geitoneura Klugii)

Iridescent Feathers – the Straw Necked Ibis Returns


The Straw-Necked Ibis must have thought the food worth a return visit, for it was back again this morning. Still solitary, it was sharing the bounty with two ducks, two Corellas, a kookaburra and a flock of Sulphur Crested Cockatoos.  My best guess is that there is some kind of burrowing larvae hatching at this … Continue reading Iridescent Feathers – the Straw Necked Ibis Returns