Friday, January 11, 2008

Wildlife update

OK, so my last entry had a link to a photo of a flying fox skimming the Yarra river. No photos this time, but some real wild-life sightings to report, from four separate walks along the Merri Creek. First, a long-necked tortoise, dark green and mossy-looking from being underwater, sitting on a rock in the middle of the Creek, demonstrating exactly why it's called what it is. Next, a blue-tongued lizard, though he's an accustomed sighting. He lives under the concrete path and just extends his head, or the curve of his body, to pick up the morning sun. Third, eight wee ducklings exploring the weeds with their mother, yesterday. And just now, what I'm pretty sure was a tiger snake, sprawled across the path. I was walking along casually thinking that piece of bark dropped in the heavy winds today looked like a snake when I realised what it was. It slithered through the grass down towards the water, and I pointed it out to two women passing by. One of them, Amelia (we had introduced ourselves years ago when I used to push Joel in his pram along the creek), went poking towards it with her stick. "Come out," she said, "we're friendly!" The other woman and I exchanged glances and decided to head our separate ways...

11 comments:

ThirdCat said...

Who on earth goes enticing snakes out from wherever they have gone? As my Dad and I were saying only a few hours ago (and here's further proof): People are Strange.

Stephanie Trigg said...

Yeah, it's exactly what you're not supposed to do. Looking back, I think I can say I froze on the spot when I saw it: lucky it didn't move towards me as I'm not sure I would have had the wit to move out of its way. I kept seeing it in my head all night, you know; and also in every strip of bark on my walk this morning too - even though I went in the other direction!

Pavlov's Cat said...

GAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH

What would she have said if it had been an actual tiger? 'Heeere, kitty kitty kitty'?

That seeing it in your head all night thing -- they do haunt one so, snakes. I reckon it's something to do with having no legs. The buggers undulate into the deepest recesses of the unconscious and lurk there waiting for you to drop your guard.

Kathleen said...

Like those spiders who flex their hairy legs all through my dreams, PC...The other night a huntsman as big as my hand (real, not dreamt) ran TOWARDS us across the loungeroom floor. Aren't we their predators?!

I guess the flipside of the coin is that it's a beautiful childlike gesture of friendliness? My 3-year-old stepson likes going up to spiders to say hello too. I imagine he'd be up for snake-poking in a heartbeat.

Stephanie Trigg said...

Actually the "scary creatures who continue to haunt you" experience I remember best came from when I was about six years old and was taken yabbying in Woodland Park, I think it was, in Essendon or Moonee Ponds. I remember looking in the bucket and seeing their big snappy pincers and articulated legs, and then spending the whole night curled up in the top half of my bed, convinced that if I put my feet down they'd get snapped, and staying too scared to look, just in case I was right.

Suse said...

Why DO huntsmen always leap TOWARDS you?

At this time of year I think every knot in the wood is a spider and every strip of bark a snake. It's not terribly relaxing around here.

We had a bat in the house the other night. At 3am. Great fun (cough).

Stephanie Trigg said...

Hi Suse, I see your bat, and raise you a possum...

Pavlov's Cat said...

Why DO huntsmen always leap TOWARDS you?

Badness.

Suse said...

Badness is right. Thank heavens the huntsman residing in our letterbox died the other day and I can retrieve my mail again without having a panic attack.

Stephanie, we've already done the possum in the house bit AGES ago. And the kangaroo on the lawn and echidna in the driveway.

It's all go around here.

Stephanie Trigg said...

Oh. Ok, the echidna wins, I think, paws down...

Stephanie Trigg said...

Mind you, Suse, we do live on a tramline. I think you must take a handicap for living in rural bliss.