Springtime at Araucaria

We certainly know Spring has arrived.

One of our dogs was barking furiously in the courtyard. On investigation, we found the cause to be a young carpet python. Since then a second one has appeared, and also an adult. There must be a second adult around somewhere for these two to have been produced (they weren’t freshly hatched – they would have been young from last season).

Carpet photon on upturned BBQ near our kitchen

Denis then noticed a movement on his computer desk, and saw a green tree snake quietly watching him.

Pythons and green tree snakes are both non-venomous, and we welcome them to control the mice (Australia has been experiencing a few plagues of those).

Next to turn up was a brown tree snake in our carport. They have some venom, but not lethal to humans, and are rear-fanged snakes (colubrids) which would make it difficult for them to bite us anyway.

More alarming for a moment or two was a large goanna, a lace monitor (over a metre in length), the dogs chased inside. My first view of it was a large brown flash of something leaping across the table next to me, after which it sat on a chest in the corner, hissing. We locked the excited dogs in the bedroom, threw a couple of rugs over it (their teeth and claws are pretty long), and Darren carefully took it outside and released it.

This morning our youngest dog was barking at something in the same corner, which turned out to be a little grass skink. We assured him it wasn’t going to turn into a goanna, and released him amongst vegetation in the courtyard.

Other signs are visits by satin bowerbirds on their way to the mountains for breeding, more and more butterflies each week, and the channel-billed cuckoos returning from New Guinea and Indonesia to seek out nests of crows and other large birds to impose their own chicks on.

Satin bowerbird bower built on our property last year and then abandoned. The long blue things are NOT drinking straws, which for environmental reasons we never use.

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