Bush tales

Dawning and the screaming birds are here. They party all night with raucous whoops and hollers and seem particularly active from midnight, and at 3 and 4 a.m. It is  hard to describe their shrieks  accompanied by flapping sounds. When roused from sleep one could easily feel that ghouls from a fiendish realm have landed. They are here – as well as the channel bill cuckoos –  and nature chuckles as once again we become aware of her power and cycles.

And of course, Mother Nature has the last laugh – or rather once again reminds  that we mere humans are not really masters of the universe as too many would try to believe. 

Staggering to the kitchen, things seem not quite right and in the foggy haze of days of interrupted sleep notice a hole chewed through the fly screen. First reaction is aghast,  next how cheeky but what a clever critter. The little yellow cherry tomatoes that were sitting on the sill are nearly all gone, a packet of seed also attacked. Aaah, bush life.

We are also under tick attack this year.  And with nasty consequences. It seems daily and ongoing. They hang off the birds and animals – in clumps, sometimes three big blobs over an eyelid or close to a beak. The native animals here seem to cope but we humans are not doing so well.

However, in spite of these tests of endurance there is the wow factor. A pink sunset that envelopes you, the butcher bird choir, being able to walk amongst a pack of wallabies who trust enough to allow such close encounter. Witnessing  such miracles as observing a koala in a tree, bush turkeys and their crazy chases,  a python wrapped around the verandah beam (I did scream and discovered an agility that has ever since amazed), new buds opening and trees green and leafy again since rain has returned. Such a privilege .

Many times the bush seems an overwhelming challenge and at times utter frustration but to be a witness to its many wonders absolutley humbles and fills me with gratitude and reverence. Tragically  this wonder is fast disappearing as the bush is overtaken by development and lack of awareness and respect for the environment and our need to preserve and care .

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