Here’s a new bird for my blog. Photos aren’t so great but nice records nonetheless. These are tiny little Diamond Firetails as seen with Mick and Rod at Girraween back in March, 2019.
I have to get out more. Here are some photos of a Brown Goshawk that flew through when we were chasing dragonflies at Gold Creek back on March 24. The contrasts were a real challenge in the Australian sky.
I remember my father in-law driving me around the streets of Nagaoka. He explained the streets were wider than those narrow lanes in many old villages and towns that were spared from the bombing raids of WWII. He, and his wife-to-be, were school-aged children during World War Two. On the night of August 1st, 1945, Nagaoka was bombed heavily from the air. Leaflets at been dropped in the preceding weeks, warning the city to evacuate because of an impending air raid. Nonetheless, I read that over two-hundred school aged children died that night, and well over a thousand adults. Sixty to eighty percent of the city was destroyed.
Now every year, in the first days of August, many travel to witness a magnificent fireworks display along the banks of the Shinano River that passes through the city. The fireworks celebrate another year of peace, and remind us of those lost to war. Like all our lives, the fireworks are bright and brilliant, and shine for the briefest of time.
We enjoyed a hot evening this year and took the bullet train from Niigata to Nagaoka. I learned what it is like to be a grain of sand passing through an hourglass.
Dragonflies have been becoming more numerous in Niigata since the start of July. I visited the pond in the park near Big Swan at Toyanogata a couple of times. The weather has been humid but not so hot. I photographed several kinds of dragonflies, but my favourites are the black ones. Depending on the angle they shimmer with various hues. Purple, then green or blue and their movements are very graceful.
The beautiful damselfly above is almost 7 centimetres in length. I saw just the one and was lucky to get these shots before it disappeared through the green. It was a very nice encounter indeed.
A more common beauty is what reminds me of the “flutterer” group of dragonflies I saw in Australia earlier this year. There are quite a few “Chou Tombo” or “Butterfly Dragonflies” getting around Toyanogata. I first found them there 11 years ago. Rhyothemis fuliginosa. They are really graceful and make me feel like I’m wandering around in a Tomb Raider video game. See the images below:
I’ve captured a number of other dragons too, and the season has a long way to go. Let’s hope I get more.
Here are some more dragonflies from the Gold Creek outing back in March. This time I tried putting the red dragonflies together but I fear I found them the most difficult to identify. Please tell me of my mistakes. Criticism much appreciated.
Above: Common Glider
Below: I’m not sure if the are all Fiery Skimmer or Rosy Skimmer
Prince Henry Drive is always a special place for a wander. Best enjoyed with good company. I always remember the highlights of each walk and who I was with. I remember I was with Kevin, Kay and Plaxy when I got one of my favourite Grey Goshawks pics there. This time Michael Atzeni and I shared views of a passing Regent Bowerbird, as well as many other treats. Maybe my favourite picture of the day is of a Red-browed Finch which was channeling the forces of all the known universes through a single, freshly acquired branch of grass seeds. The little bird seemed so calm and confident with such a responsibility. Makes all our election fears, global and social anxieties on this small planet seem meaningless in their brief passing. It was such a wonderful thing to witness with Mick.
Two Australian Flutterers at Gold Creek back in March.
The above are some images of Graphic Flutterer. Below, Yellow-striped Flutterer. They are well named. They do flutter.
Golden Week 2019 is soon setting into history. My passerine photo collection still wains behind large easy to photograph raptors and here are my only successes. I tried hard but didn’t find many subjects other than these. These three are still excitement for tired eyes, a sore throat and blocked nose.
Here are some more dragonflies from Gold Creek as seen back in March.
To be honest, I find even simple and seemingly obvious identifications are challenging due to various lighting conditions, and I can”t recall their sizes.
Here we go..
Above, I believe is a Black-headed Skimmer finding some nourishment.
The slideshow above is of three views of a Palemouth. Although, I think the middle one looks strange in the light.
Some more dragonfly pictures from my outing in Brisbane back at the end of March. Thank you to Chris Burwell and Rod Hobson for help with identifications.
I was trying to capture many in flight and was spending some time trying to capture Water Princes mating and noticed every now and then a larger Emperor would hastily charge through. I was lucky to capture some interesting behaviour.