Banjo Frogs were breeding last month. This month they are food for the White-necked Heron.
The Banjo Frogs were calling loudly from the dam in the middle of October. A day or two later, lots of frog spawn appeared on the surface of the water. I am guessing we will have a healthy population of Banjo Frogs next year. While I have not seen tadpoles in the dam in previous … Continue reading Frog Spawn
One of the things I most enjoy about my Fifteen Acres blog is the communication with people who are interested in nature and who enjoy sharing flora and fauna finds – both on my site, and on their own. For those long term followers who must wonder where I have been, I want to write … Continue reading 12 Months On
Another orchid to make a first appearance in 2017 was the Purple Beard-orchid. Two separate plants grew right on the edge of the walking track at the back of our property, and another two on a cleared section near the Brown-clubbed Spider-orchids. We had seen one Red Beard-orchid in a different area in 2013, and … Continue reading Purple Beard-orchid (Calochilus robertsonii)
I am looking for some assistance here. For the last three years I have watched this patch of what I think are Chiloglottis leaves grow and then curl up in late Spring/early Summer. I haven’t seen any flowers grow on them. The leaves are growing beneath a mature eucalyptus tree approximately halfway between the house … Continue reading Mystery Leaves (6 Photos) Can You Identify This Plant?
Out for a quick walk, I didn’t take my macro lens with me. Pity, because I came across a luminescent insect about 2cm in length, sitting on a broken acacia trunk. Turns out it was a large parasitic fly. According to Museum Victoria, the Tachinid Fly larvae feed on Scarab Beetle larvae. The adults also … Continue reading Tachinid Fly (Rutilia lepida)
When we first moved in, almost five years ago now, there were very few native plants around the dam. We pulled out a heap of Agapanthus plants and a large cactus plant which, to us, were at odds with sclerophyll bushland surrounding it. Since then, grass grew, kangaroos and wallabies grazed, and each year we … Continue reading Self-Seeding Cranberry Heath
Last Monday was a good bird day. We often have birds sitting on the jetty railing. Usually, Australian Wood Ducks; often Little Pied Cormorants; rarely, a White Necked Heron. On Monday, all three species were sharing the space. The Little Pied Cormorants have been here every morning since then, diving for food and airing … Continue reading A Mixed Flock
Common Heath can have white, pink or red flowers. We don’t have any red flowering heath here, but it is found in a reserve about ten minutes drive down the road. Over the years I have found about 3 or 4 plants with deep pink flowers, but predominantly we have white flowering Heath on our … Continue reading Pale Pink Heath
Summer flowers are very welcome for the small dots of colour they provide among dry grass and bracken. These Poison Lobelia flowers were growing right on the edge of the dam in sandy, moist soil. While I have photographed Poison Lobelia in previous years, I have just realised they were not included in the species … Continue reading Poison Lobelia (Lobelia pratioides)
When I first found these pretty blue flowers, a year or two ago, I thought they might be native. I put the photograph aside for identification, and got too busy to search for the species name. With the wet spring weather, it is plentiful again this year. Unfortunately, it isn’t a native Australian species, but … Continue reading Pimpernel (Anagallis arvensis)
I had the opportunity to go walking up the back in the bush yesterday. The sun reflected off an object laying on the ground which seemed vivid green. Seeking this, I found a leaf covered with a cluster of large spherical attachments – too large for eggs, so presume they must be some kind of … Continue reading Another Puzzle: What Is This?
Duckling Story 3 may be a continuation of Duckling Story 2 – it is a bit difficult to interpret these events. An hour or two after the seven ducklings disappeared into the long grass, we saw a female duck with two ducklings grazing in that green spot all of the ducks seem to love. We … Continue reading Duckling Story 3
For some reason I associated the disappearance of the seven ducklings with the first sighting of the Swamp Harrier. When I check back through the photographs, I note that the single duckling disappeared on that date. The seven ducklings made their first appearance a week after that date. As is common, the adult Australian … Continue reading Duckling Story 2
In my last post, I added the Swamp Harrier to my list of birds sighted on the property, lamenting that I had not seen the seven wild ducklings since it appeared. After going back through my photographs for December, I realise I actually have three stories about ducklings – all of them ending in mystery. … Continue reading Duckling Story 1
It has been a very long time since I was able to add another bird to the list of species found on our property. Usually this is a cause of celebration. However, I am not sure if I am pleased to have spotted this small raptor. A few days before it appeared, a pair of … Continue reading Swamp Harrier (Circus Approximans)
Happy New Year to you! On this first day of 2017, the cold and damp weather is still with us. A few days ago, we were complaining about being too hot, and now we’re cold again. One positive of the cool weather is the prolonged flowering season. In particular, the Pale Vanilla Lily (Arthropodium milleflorum) … Continue reading Pale Vanilla Lily – White?
As I wrote about last week, and as requested by Nature on the Edge here are some photographs of the smaller plants, such as Ivy Leaf Violets, Rice Flowers, Pale Sundews and Goodenias which seem to be flourishing this year, with the wet weather and prolonged cooler temperatures. We’ve had carpets of colour in the grass … Continue reading Ivy Leaf Violets, Sundews, Rice Flowers and Goodenias
It’s always a good feeling to add a new plant to the species list, but it’s especially rewarding when it is a new orchid species for our property. I’ve been puzzling over the various types of Pink Fingers orchids for quite some time now, each year trying to take photos that lend themselves to identification. … Continue reading Ornate Pink Fingers (Caladenia ornata)
Last year I photographed this Echidna hiding under a log. It was dug firmly into the ground and I had no intentions of disturbing it. As you can see, the spines on its back are badly damaged, as is the fur. We have had bushfires in our area, so perhaps it survived a fire, or … Continue reading A Resilient Echidna
On my walk around the property this morning, I noticed many species of plants sending up new growth. Among them were patches of orchid leaves. The photograph above shows Small Mosquito Orchid leaves, Waxlip Orchid leaves and possibly a Helmet Orchid leaf. In other places, many species of Greenhood are establishing colonies, the Gnat … Continue reading Orchid Leaves
We had so little rain in Autumn I thought we wouldn’t have a lot of fungi this year. Two weeks into Winter, we’ve had sufficient rain to green the landscape, but not enough to run off into the dam. However, it seems to be sufficient for the fungi to begin emerging. I found these beautifully … Continue reading Tiny Fungi
Technically, the Parsons Bands Orchid emerge after the first heavy rains of Autumn. Well, we had a slight shower and here they are. At the moment the Orchids are only lightly scattered here and there, so I am hoping for a heavy downfall soon to encourage more. The photograph below was taken with my … Continue reading Orchid Season Starts Again: Parsons Bands