Sorry folks, I have had a complete lack of free time in March, and didn’t manage to get in a field visit. I did attempt to do a bit of a study of native vegetation used in streetscaping in Wagga Wagga while out walking with my nieces the other day, but I underestimated the impatience of two preschoolers who wanted to get to the park.
I did have the delightful experience last night of hearing a Southern Boobook (Ninox novaeseelandiae – also known as the Mopoke) sounding-off very close-by outside my house as I went to bed. You can listen to a recording of their call here. Their call reminds me of cartoon cuckoo-clocks, the sort of sound that if you heard it in a TV show you’d think it didn’t sound anything like a real bird. I’m not sure if the one I heard was in my garden or a neighbour’s, but it sounded quite close, and called several times before falling silent, which quite made my night. There are a lot of mice and rats around at the moment, which may have drawn it into town, but I do hope it hasn’t eaten any poisoned ones; birds of prey are one of the tragic by-catches of rodent baits every time rodent numbers increase. Aaaand that was a great way to put a downer on my story about hearing a fun bird last night.
In other news: the insect field guide I had on back-order from CSIRO arrived yesterday, which makes my first ‘proper’ insect guide. My other invertebrate guides are for spiders, water bugs, and ‘garden pests’, so I’m pleased to finally have a book which will help me ID actual terrestrial insects that I see around the place.
This is the book I bought, available for purchase here.
April is shaping up to be busy as well, and I’m pretty sure I’ve got something happening every weekend, but I will do my utmost to get a proper field trip in to share with you all. See you then.