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Wildlife at the Farm

This Easter, the days were perfect. Vibrant blue skies. Vistas to green paddocks. Crystal clear water in the creeks.

In the Chinese Elm trees in the garden, the king parrots dangled like lurid Xmas decorations showing off their vivid red and green plumage. Wrens hopped through the grass and maggies warbled in the White Box trees.

Down at the creek the kids skimmed stones and searched for turtles in the deep, dark pond, but they heard them coming and were hard to spot. Not the kids. The turtles.

As we walked back though the paddock we spied a dark shape and came upon a female echidna, slowly nosing her way under rocks searching for ants. Her spines looked as though she had just come from a session of foil tipping at the local hairdressers, brown tipped with cream.

The Issa browns decided to lay their eggs on the top of the hay bales in the shed, which then required some climbing and prancing by the kids as they searched for the nest and the warm brown eggs.

Later we found the reason for the chooks’ paranoia. A large red bellied black snake was in their pen, its tongue flickering as it searched in vain for eggs. It slithered under a log and exited as we drew close.

On the top of Black Mountain the kids delighted in the shiny new born calves and the heifers who gambolled in the sunshine. And there were so many roos! Families of eight or more watched silently, ears pricked, then thumped away down the hill.

At night, the sky unrolled and revealed all the stars, from the Evening Star to the Milky Way and from the black shadows came a white, ghostly shape, an owl flying low, looking for the mice that hide everywhere around the house.