General chat

“Is there any way we could have a thread for the more lightweight stuff like music and general chat?”

Do it here. Please no personal attacks or bickering. Anything abusive, provocative or inflammatory may be deleted.

19 Comments

  1. Gezza

     /  April 20, 2018

    Wow, bit of an experience this morning. All the pooks turned up in my backyard & wee Jojo was over the fence too. So I fed them all like chooks on the lawn and put a handful over the fence for the pooklet.

    When I went back outside later Bluey, Sweety & Aspen were on the fence, wanting a bit more up there on the fence posts or railings. I find that cute & Sweety’s always so relatively tame & comes up so close she’ll take food from my hand quite often.

    Suddenly Aspen’s leg slipped down the gap between the fence palings. He was panicking & flapping all over the place. I tried not to intervene but his panicking was wedging him in worse & I thought he’s going to break his leg.

    So I moved along and lifted him up, but his leg was still caught. I had to hold him with one hand and slide his leg up with the other, free him and let him fly off. He was shrieking and so were all the others.

    Sweety flew up and grabbed my head from behind with her talons while I was extricating Aspen, & then flew down the bank, shrieking like the others. Luckily, I had a woolly hat on & I felt nothing painful: actually it felt quite gentle.

    They are all now very wary & keep their distance & call out alarmed warnings at me when I look over the fence despite my soothing words and their eating a few handfuls of wheat I threw over as a peace offering. They don’t seem to have any idea that I was helping Aspen – not even Aspen.

    I started taking an interest in & videoing these pooks when they were occasional visitors to my patch of stream and parenga & they kept their distance & were just normal pooks doing normal mahi. They’ve got progressively more reliant on me and been making far more frequent visits to my yard than I ever intended to happen, but it’s meant I’ve got some fantastic close-up footage of adult, baby and young pooks.

    If our relationship reverts to a more stand-offish one again now it will probably be a good thing.

    • Gezza

       /  April 20, 2018
      • Gezza

         /  April 20, 2018

        Sorry about the roaring sound, haven’t found a way to stop the roaring norwester zephyrs here from being picked up by the mobile’s mics.

        • Kitty Catkin

           /  April 20, 2018

          That happened with a turkey here when there were ten turkeys who lived in the area and used to visit us quite often. One caught his leg in the fance and carried on like a raving lunatic when he was being freed. Even with two of us, it wasn’t easy with him flapping and acting as if it was our fault. No gratitude was shown, needless to say.

          I am sure that the pooks will forgive you (??? !!!) for saving Aspen’s leg and life. They have had nothing but loving-kindness from Grandpa Gezza.

          • Gezza

             /  April 20, 2018

            It’s windy and cold. I put a jacket on & went out for a peek to see if the eel was out and the pooks were anywhere. Sweety was on the back lawn. She got up on the fence and some wheat off a railing, but when I offered her a little bit of bread she wouldn’t come and get it – wanted to move a good 4 feet away. The others all turned up so I gave them all a little piece as well.

            Sweety went down the bank and fed some to Jojo and just as I was leaving I saw Bluey snuggle down into the nest and call Jojo – “time for bed, little one!”. And she went over and snuggled in. So cute! 🙂

            • Gezza

               /  April 20, 2018

              🙄 * took some wheat off a railing
              ** wanted ME to move about four feet away

    • Conspiratoor

       /  April 20, 2018

      I find it hard to accept a good kiwi bastard taking a liking to a bunch of ungrateful australian swamp hens but there you go.
      But look on the bright side G. The quackers might stage a comeback! At least all they do is shit and eat

      • Gezza

         /  April 20, 2018

        Well, they’re not cooperating either, at the moment. It’s courting time, the stream’s full of mallard and hybrid drakes. I’ve taken tons of video clips of them cruising around because the stream’s full of whistling. It’s something the mallard drakes do when they’re looking for a hen to partner up with for a season. They do a funny little bob down in the water and whistle – must impress the ladies or something. But it’s all over in a flash. Just want to catch one doing it on video – but when I get the cellcam focused onto one likely looking group of singles – someone further up or downstream does it and none of my lot bloody do! The only time I ever actually see them do this crazy thing is when I haven’t got the camera out or running.

        • Conspiratoor

           /  April 20, 2018

          Just a hunch G but the defensive screen of pooks has meant the ducks are keeping their heads down. The thing was in balance last year with 2 on 2 so the ducks felt comfortable sharing the trough.

          What say you o wise one?

          • Gezza

             /  April 20, 2018

            Well, Charlie and Prettygirl, the mallard/grey hybrids and Pooky, Bluebelle & Bluey were all quite happy to eat together just over the fence or in my backyard up until November when I went up North for 3 weeks. Sometimes there’d be a bit of argy bargy, but generally they all tolerated each other.

            Charlie and Prettygirl wouldn’t tolerate any other ducks up here though. They quickly learnt not to try and bully the pooks!

            When I got back late December, C & PG had departed for places unknown, so had Pooky & Bluebelle, and Bluey, Aspen & Sweety were the new resident group. The surviving ducklings from last year were the new occupants of the stream. They grow up really blimmin fast too. Those few that survive.

            At first a couple of hen ducks – Dot and Daphne – would come up and share with the pooks & there were no probs. Except that Dot & Daph would chase off any other ducks >;( AND, that once Pickles was born they would barge over or around him when he was tiny to get at wheat. And sometimes pull his little feathers – until he got big enuf to get his own back.

            Since then I might get the occasional duck among the pooks, but I think they get given the message to sod off.

            Hen ducks with chicks – or who are about to lay within a few days – will actually attack the pooks – and they’ll run away. And any large drakes coming near young Jojo pooklet at the moment run a similar risk of getting attacked even by tiny little Sweety.

            • Conspiratoor

               /  April 20, 2018

              C and pg. Love it

            • Gezza

               /  April 20, 2018

              Tell you one thing we can probably both agree on: you don’t want a pukeko shreiking and grabbing your head!

      • Kitty Catkin

         /  April 20, 2018

        It was a funny sight when mum duck and 10 (I think) duckies turned neatly and strolled down a drive as its owner was walking up the other side. His face when I pointed out his guests was also very funny.

        I also saw a little flock of chooks running like mad after a car coming up a drive, like people trying to catch a bus that’s driving away. ‘Stop !!! stop !!! stop !!!’

        • Kitty Catkin

           /  April 20, 2018

          Hendie the hen hasn’t been back, or not when I’ve been at the window.

          Hendie is not as unoriginal a name as it sounds.

  2. Kitty Catkin

     /  April 20, 2018

    The garden is knee-deep in fantails at the moment. Dear little birds.

    • robertguyton

       /  April 20, 2018

      Why are they flying so low?

      • Kitty Catkin

         /  April 20, 2018

        That’s a figure of speech, not a literal statement. It’s like someone saying that they’re up to their ears in work, when they are obviously not literally up to their ears in it.

        • Gezza

           /  April 20, 2018

          Hetty, this arvo. I’m telling her she’s a real little cutie & she’s lapping it up 😀

          • Kitty Catkin

             /  April 20, 2018

            She IS a little cutie. And she knows it; what a flirt 😀 Little show-off !