Archive for December, 2009
At the top of the cabinetwood timber industry’s wish list, the chunk of trunk in the foreground contains the equivalent of $100,000 worth of spectacular hardwood asset – Yellow Walnut (Beilschmiedia bancroftii). Of course, under World Heritage legislation, its protection confers a potential three-year jail term for any attempt at removal.
Behold, the colourful Two-spined Spider (Poecilopachys australiana). This species forms a very loose wheel-web; most often, it would seem, in a horizontal plane. Like many small wheel-web weavers, it is far too much of a target for birds during the day, so it dismantles its web before dawn and hides beneath green leaves.
Photographed last night at 4 minutes past 11.00 pm, this adult Little Kingfisher (Alcedo pusilla) was found roosting over an unnamed tributary feeder to Cooper Creek. Along with the Azure Kingfisher, they are the only Australian members of the Alcedo Kingfishers, which specialise at deep diving into water for their prey.
I photographed this marvelously discrete arachnid three nights ago and was delighted with the result. Amyciaea albomaculata mimics the green tree ant Oecophylla smaragdina in shape and colour; from behind, the two black spots on the spider’s abdomen, look like the eyes on an ant’s head.