Sunday, May 13, 2012

bird-spotting (but only cute birds)

Okay,I admit it; I like cute birds.  Lots of times when I'm on guided hikes and everyone stops to stare breathlessly for what seems like hours at some plain old bird sitting on a branch or another bird that's dawdling across the track, I do tend to get bored after, well, 10 seconds.
But give me a cutie-pie chick or duckling and I'm all agog and can watch for hours. 
J, my swimming pal, told me that she always keeps a camera on her car, so I thought "Why not?  I have an old digital camera.".
In February on my way to Whakatane, I found parent swans with their babes (cignets?) on the shores of Lake Rotoiti.  The mama and papa were a bit scary ("Get away from me!  Get away!") but, oh goodness, I wanted to scoop the babies up and cuddle them to my ample bosom.

Last Sunday, I'd parked my car at the bottom of the (horrific) zig-zag to the right side of Lyall Bay beach, and was prepared to stagger up the zig-zag to get to the main track over the hills.  As I gathered up my drink bottle, backpack, rain-jacket, rain-pants, phone, cardy, beanie, cap, sunblock (after all, the hike would take me all of, perhaps, two and a half hours! - I had a bigger bag than when I went to England for  6 weeks - my bag then weighed only 3kg).  I glanced out the front car window and saw there was a huge amount of water in the gutter that was about three metres long- and there were a dozen or so birds - blackbirds, thrushes, sparrows - bathing happily in the water.  They were splashing and squeaking, and having a fine old time.   I just managed to get off one photo before a car came in front of me and disturbed them.

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