Summer ends in the national capital, Canberra (Australia) – Clean air, clean water, good nutrition, shelter and safety; the essentials of life in the national capital, the rest of Australia and globally. I do think about these issues quite a lot. February was no exception.

It has been a grey, often wet and windy end to summer in the national capital. The sun has shone too but it hasn’t really had any bite to it like it has in recent years. Thank goodness, I say. Who needs that howling inferno we had last year. However, we know the clement weather is temporary so we enjoy it while we can.

During February, we have some relaxing family time.

Eating healthily.

Some kids get takeaway while the going is good.*
[Juvenile Eastern Spinebill. Photo taken at the ANBG.]

The wattle bird is no doubt happy to get rid of its/this eastern koel (cuckoo) chick.* Freeloaders not welcome. Luckily, I have plenty of figs to go around.

Watch out! Lock up your eastern spinebills. [Wary eastern spinebill on the dog fence.]

The orchard swallowtails love the pink salvia too.*

The Macleay’s swallowtail is green with envy.* (Photo taken at the ANBG).

My garden is verdant. That is code for the mosquitoes are taking over the joint.
It is hazardous to look like a predator but it is no party being attacked either. Safety first.

“Play nice,” said the fly.

In times of crises, some prefer to blend in.*

Others get trapped between camo and marketing.

Sometimes I wonder whether we, Aussies, are living in a fool’s paradise.
It’s galling. [Insect galls in tree.]

Look out! Over there. There’s a snake in the grass. Just joking.
[Unidentified skink]

Stay calm, stay kind

and stay out of hospital.

This is my (somewhat satirical) response to The Changing Seasons โ€“ February 2021 photo challenge hosted by the lovely Su at Zimmerbitch.

In other news, my vegetable garden is under constant attack by fungal disease and hungry critters. On the other hand, the new leafy greens I planted this month are going gangbusters.

I do hope all my readers are well. I know it is very difficult in many countries where the number of Covid infections are high and where peace is not a given. If you are struggling, please seek help. If you are one of the lucky ones like me, please be kind.

Kind Regards.

*Photo taken by my True Love.

58 thoughts on “The Changing Seasons – February 2021

  1. A good month when compared to last year. No smoke, no constant burning sun, enough rain (mostly) but when our only major complaint is the mozzies it doesnโ€™t get much better. Loved all the photos Tracy, so sharp and detailed. And loved this satirical take on the month. May it continue through March.๐Ÿฅ‚cheers my friend and hereโ€™s to autumn….

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    1. Thankfully it is not to hot to wear long pants and closed shoes. I spray my clothes otherwise the mozzies bite through the clothes! I’m hoping for a few warmish days to get the last of the tomatoes. Like you, I hope that March will be uneventful. I’ve nearly finished my drawing so I will be able to start tiling this week I think. Cheers to you and Jack too, Pauline. It is the best time of year for you, isn’t it?


  2. I love this Tracy; words and images. Weโ€™ve had such a dry, hot summer, but at least very few mozzies. The rain has arrived โ€” as it did during our other recent lock-down. Iโ€™m hoping this purely coincidental ๐Ÿ˜ฌ

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      1. I’m seeing dark clouds over the Waitakere Ranges from my office, so it’s looking like at least today will be wet (happy dance in progress).

        I think T and I are a long way down the vaccine list.

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    1. Thank you.
      I don’t think the koels are as bad as Indian Myrna. At least, I hope not. The chicks are the worse though. The chicks are incessant in their begging. They have discovered our fig tree in the last couple of years and they eat a lot! I wonder if they are eating my tomatoes too?

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      1. Mosquito eggs can lie dormant for years waiting until they are immersed in the depth of water needed to hatch them out. They need the protein in a feed of blood for egg production. In Northern Canada we have all typed of biting and blood sucking insects. The very largest flys are the horse flys that take bite of flesh. The tiny biting flys are call โ€œno-see-umsโ€™โ€™ or Ceratopgonidae that also leave with a mouthful of flesh and leave a tiny bleeding bite mark. These flys are so tiny that they go unnoticed until they leave behind their handy work. The insects make the lives of the wild animals a misery.

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      2. I’ve got too many pots, Sid, which the wrigglers hang around in. I’m trying to cut back.
        I always associate colder climes with frenetic insect explosions when the sun finally comes out. I guess the fish must love those midges. I imagine that agriculture is only a small industry in your north and so there is less insecticide in the environment? The poor animals. Probably not much fun for people either.


  3. Such a clever post Tracy. I especially enjoy seeing the wattle bird what a lovely example of nature. Your entire post is actually full of lovely examples of nature! How did you manage to make a hospital look beautiful?

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    1. Thank you, Natalie. That photo was of the Koel chick. The wattle bird adoptive parent is only half the size. It was too busy finding food for that baby to stay still for a photo!
      My husband spent some time exploring the reserve behind the hospital when I had my eye surgery last year. We now go for some walks there. There is always something to see. The hospital sparkles through the trees in the afternoon sun. I thought I should chuck in at least one landscape photo. ๐Ÿ˜„


  4. Tracy, I admire your photography of the great small creatures in our world. Beautiful apart from those dreaded mossies as they love me. Have a wonderful day ๐Ÿ˜Š

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  5. My first time saying hello to you . . . so pleased I found you in far colder climes in Scandinavia ๐Ÿ™‚ ! As I live less than three hours drive north of you in the Southern Highlands every word naturally resonated and every photo told a story I know . . . thank you ! Last year at this time we here had been battling the Green Wattle Creek blaze coming variably from north, then west and most dangerously from the south for three horrific months . . . the current cool and damp summer has made the need to watch out for other monsters more bearable . . . we’ve managed . . . we’ll manage . . . but nature’s beauty shown does make the latter easier . . . be well . . .


    1. Thank you for commenting, Eha, and welcome. I’m so pleased you enjoyed the photos.
      I lived in the Southern Highlands for a couple of years when I was a child and have fond memories of the dog rolling in during the day even in the summer. I was horrified by the Green Wattle Creek fire which I felt was so emblematic of how much our climate has changed over the last 40 years. I hope you and the land are recovering from the trauma of it all and are able to spend time outdoors among the birds and trees.

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  6. I always marvel at the contrast of seasons between hemispheres; so glad to hear this summer was safer and calmer, and the biggest threat may be addressed with spray and long pants. I loved your story line and the featured cast; they are all naturals (LOL). Enjoy your changing season, Tracy!

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  7. These are wonderful photos! Sorry to hear that your skeeters are so bad. Northen New England gets the little black flies that end up in one’s mouth or up one’s nose. I’ll take the cold and snow for a bit longer!

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  8. Hey Tracy! You had me gawking in amazement & chuckling in turn … a witty and beautiful recap of your month.

    I recognise that what we enjoy in comfort as your readers comes at a price for you, ie. verdant gardens=mozzies, and other discomforts to allow us a peek into your lovely & entertaining world. S, thank you very much!

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  9. Tracy your change of the seasons photographs are sublime. Some of our birds that winter down south have arrived back from wintering grounds. Two birds the robin and flocks of nameless little birds that sing their hearts out starting before dawn. Cherry and plum trees are just beginning to show their homage to spring. Most of our fruit trees are still weeks from blooming. We do have the snow geese wintering here from the Arctic but no birds as colourful as the splashes of colour in your area.

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    1. Sorry I cut my reply short. I wanted to respond more fully but appointments got in the way. Your birds must be getting very busy. It is always so lovely to see the little birds. I find that they pay far less attention to me in the spring. The blossom too is always uplifting.
      Our parrots are having quite a difficult time at the moment as they have to compete with the Indian Myna. It does seem to be a losing battle keeping the latter in check.
      I am looking forward to hearing how your spring is progressing next month.


  10. Your photos are fabulous! Totally in love with the cockatoo and Eastern Spinebill! And glad to hear your weather’s much kinder to you this year – well deserved break from all the past disasters. Hope you’ll get a couple of sunny days for your tomatoes. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Stay save! ๐Ÿ’•

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  11. Beautiful shots of nature, birds, butterfliess and insects, Tracy. Sounded like a lovely summer weather-wise for you. Here in Melbourne we had a nice summer. We had many sunny days but the weather wasn’t as warm as it was the previous years. I agree mozzies are a real pain. We don’t get them too much here in Melbourne (at least where I am) but we do get a lot more spiders here in the summer…which you probably understand.

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    1. Hello Mabel, thank you for your comment. The cooler weather has been a pleasant change for Melburnians and Canberrans alike. It is a good break for wildlife too. ๐Ÿ™‚
      As a mother of two boys (now grown), I have learnt to live with and love spiders. I hope they are not proving too troublesome for you. Take care. Regards. Tracy.


      1. Yes, the cooler weather is lovely for the wildlife. I’ve been leaning to manage spiders around my property. It’s been a steep learning curve to live with them but it has been spider. Enjoy the cooler weather over there and happy autumn ๐Ÿ™‚

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