Birds Children Family Normandale Sunset Zealandia

December 24, 2015 … perhaps summer

Another visit to Zealandia yesterday.

The New Zealand kaka (Nestor meridionalis) is thriving at Zealandia. It uses its powerful beak to look for insects behind tree bark. This is a problem for nearby gardeners as it is capable of ring-barking a tree.

This time it was with our eldest son, daughter-in-law and four of our grandchildren. Though the stiff breeze persisted in the outside world, the sky was blue and the park provided shelter for us all. Bird life was plentiful and audible, with a particular abundance of tuis and shags. Further into the park, the kaka were raucous and buy. These native parrots were once prolific in the canopy of lowland forests. They are certainly thriving at Zealandia. I would not want my fingers near that fearsome beak.

The lyric soprano of the bush, the bellbird (Anthuris melanura) merges with the bush. Its lovely chiming call is a joy to the ear

My favourite place in the park is the “Discovery Centre”, and it is always worth the long trudge up the hill to get there. It is the place I am most likely to find a clear view of the saddleback (tieke), stitchbird (hihi), bellbird (korimako) and North Island Robin (toutouwai). I could sit there for hours, and do when I make a solo visit. I was pleased that, despite the presence of two animated grandsons, I caught so many birds yesterday.

The North Island Robin (Petroica longpipes) is an endearing little bird that will sit on the toes of your boots as it chases insects.

The North Island robin is a problematic subject because it comes towards humans. My son had his big 150-600 mm lens with him, but with the bird sitting almost on the toe of his shoes, he could not focus. I was further away.

We are expecting a fine and sunny Christmas so this sunset on the 23rd seems to be going in the right direction

As the day came to a beautiful end, there was a gorgeous red-gold sunset. The trouble with seeing it at this stage is that, by the time I get to a suitable lookout point, the light has gone. I dashed upstairs and hung out the bedroom window, pointing the camera towards Petone and the Eastern Bays.

Another day done.




By wysiwygpurple

Retirement suits me well. I spend much of my time out making pictures, or at home organizing and refining my pictures.

This blog provides me with a platform from which I can indulge my passion for improving my photography and at the same time analyze my thoughts about what I have seen, where I have been and what is happening in my life. My images set out to be honest, but that does not mean I have not adjusted them. I use software to display what I saw though the viewfinder to best advantage. My preference is for landscape and nature, and is mostly centred around my hometown of Wellington, New Zealand.

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