Readers’ wildlife photos

Reader Tim Anderson, who lives in Cowra, southeastern Australia sent some lovely parrot photos (he adds that there’s a poem about his region by Banjo Patterson).

Attached are pictures of Superb Parrots (Polytelis swainsonii), which are currently visiting my neighborhood. This species is somewhat endangered in this area, as land clearing has reduced the number of old trees with suitable nesting holes.

Nevertheless, this is a Superior Bird, as you can tell from its name. It does not associate with other, less well-endowed species, and when it deigns to speak at all, it converses only in Latin.

 

A landscape and a mammal from Stephen Barnard in Idaho:

The oddly shaped peak in the far background is called Queen’s Crown. I don’t know where it got the name, but I’m pretty sure it wasn’t from Game of Thrones. 🙂 It may have something to do with Paul Scott’s The Raj Quartet, but that may be asking too much from rural Idaho.

And a striped skunk (Mephitis mephitis). [JAC: Stephen adds that it was ambling fearlessly along the path, munching on worms, and was wet because it had recently rained. That is one fat mustelid!]

16 Comments

  1. Blue
    Posted October 8, 2018 at 8:21 am | Permalink

    These, Mr Anderson / Mr Barnard, are gorgeous !

    All make m’Monday morning – commencement … … gooood !

    Blue

    • Blue
      Posted October 8, 2018 at 8:25 am | Permalink

      And that poem, Mr Anderson, only ADDS to ’em ALL !

      Blue

    • Jenny Haniver
      Posted October 8, 2018 at 10:47 am | Permalink

      +1

  2. Terry Sheldon
    Posted October 8, 2018 at 8:23 am | Permalink

    Lovely birds and a great skunk pic, too!

  3. Diana MacPherson
    Posted October 8, 2018 at 8:48 am | Permalink

    A couple of weeks ago, I saw a skunk running across a ountry road. Running! I’ve never seen a skunk run & it looked funny because of it’s little rotund body.

  4. Michael Fisher
    Posted October 8, 2018 at 8:57 am | Permalink

    From the HWY 20 side, looking south-west up Picabo Hill to the vertical volcanic tuff of the “Queen’s Crown” at the top:

    I suppose it’s named for the generic shape of a royal tiara ~ eg below is the King George III Fringeworn by the Queen & Princess Anne at their respective weddings:

    • rickflick
      Posted October 8, 2018 at 10:01 pm | Permalink

      Sounds likely to me. We have a local landmark called Lizard’s Butte which has slowly changed due to erosion. A long time resident says it looked much more like a lizard when he first arrived. Someday it may have to be renamed.

      • Michael Fisher
        Posted October 8, 2018 at 10:55 pm | Permalink

        I’ve put a picture in this post. Old timers eh? They also say cops are very young compared to 50 years ago & food isn’t a patch on what it tasted [taste being 90% about aroma] like in the good old days of TB & lynchings. 🙂

        Lizard Butte

        By “Lizard’s Butte” I take it you mean “Lizard Butte” near Marsing? The lizard with the offensive, huge white cross planted on its head by evangelical faithtards? According to the USGS it’s an “erosional remnant of an inner crater-wall basaltic spatter layer” & basalt has a MOHS of 6 [glass will not scratch it, but a steel file will]. The basalt is the black stuff in the picture below – perhaps the softer rock & vegetation colouring has changed in 50 years – thus maybe the shape of the foreleg is less clear? I looked at a bunch of photo’s & the lizard’s leg is highly variable depending on season, light & angle. But my favoured hypothesis is old timer’s disease until I’ve seen old colour photographs that say different 🙂

        • rickflick
          Posted October 8, 2018 at 11:49 pm | Permalink

          Well, I’ve only been here for 6 months so I can’t say for sure. But it looks to me like he could be right about the gradual change. The weathering erodes the softer light layer underneath the edge of the basalt and makes it prone to collapse. I should really go up there and inspect it for myself. You are right about the cross being offensive. It mars the otherwise interesting geology. (I was told the site is owned by a private group. Probably a local asylum church.)

  5. Posted October 8, 2018 at 9:22 am | Permalink

    Very good pictures!
    Wish I had parrots hanging out in my yard…

    • Glenda Palmer
      Posted October 8, 2018 at 11:10 am | Permalink

      +1

  6. Posted October 8, 2018 at 11:49 am | Permalink

    Lovely photos of Superb Parrots and the trees they are feeding on. What are the trees? Elms? Why do they not rate identification as does the parrot? Excellent example of plant blindness!

    • Tim Anderson
      Posted October 8, 2018 at 2:24 pm | Permalink

      As an (ex)forester, I’m certainly not blind to trees. But elms are exotics in Australia and as such are rated as weeds.

  7. yazikus
    Posted October 8, 2018 at 5:40 pm | Permalink

    What a handsome skunk! Thanks for sharing.

  8. rickflick
    Posted October 8, 2018 at 9:59 pm | Permalink

    I’m delighted at all these shots. I’m wondering if the parot’s environment could be improved by providing artificial nesting sites to replace the lost trees?

  9. Gnu Atheist
    Posted October 9, 2018 at 11:11 am | Permalink

    Sacre bleu! Un skunk de pew avec le odeur monumental! Aaaaaaaahhhhhhhhh!!!

    Sorry…

    I’ve been watching some old Looney Tunes lately.


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