I've kept this blog, on and off, since 2006. In 2015 I used it to chart daily encounters, images, thoughts and feelings about volcanic basalt/bluestone in Melbourne and Victoria, especially in the first part of the year. I plan to write a book provisionally titled Bluestone: An Emotional History, about human uses of and feelings for bluestone. But I am also working on quite a few other projects and a big grant application, especially now I am on research leave. I'm working mostly from home, then, for six months, and will need online sociability for company!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Bad rufous night heron! bad!

Early dusk, and the pale yellow light of a rain-drenched Hallowe'en shone on the huge reddy brown bird, perched solidly on the edge of the fishpond, amidst growth that after all this rain can only be described as verdant. And shining.  I summoned the others to marvel at its beauty, then we ran outside, shouting loudly, to frighten it away from the fishpond. It flew away; but an hour later was back, perching high in the citriodora. We looked it up, and it's a nankeen or rufous night heron. When it's breeding, it has an elegant white plume down the back of its neck. The one we saw had a plume about eight inches long, as opposed to the much shorter one in the picture here. I understand it's feeding itself and its young, but after such a visitation, we don't see our fish for days. And even if we could frighten it away, it would still come back and be feeding at night. It was huge, solid, and placid. And hungry. Trick or treat, rufous night heron?

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1 comment:

Hannah Kilpatrick said...

Well, at least it's chosen its terrifying costume appropriately for its audience.

(Word verification: outdam. I think blogger is suggesting the "out, damned heron" technique.)