We have been waking to the most delightful sound of a local congregation of magpies warbling at the top of their lungs. They make me smile, they are such a happy bird and they love being around humans and this family of 18 or so pies have been living in our garden this spring and they are so curious and interested in the happening of the household. Most of them are quite young and they are like naughty toddlers squawking at their parents to feed them and when mum gets sick of them yelling she hits out at them with her wings and they roll onto their backs in a submissive pose, very funny to watch, all mums know how Mrs Magpie feels I'm sure! They love our birdbaths and when the bore water lawn sprinkler goes on group showering is a must, they end up drenched and drooping but oh so happy.
The prickly visitor was crossing our street last evening and ducked for cover when I appeared with my camera and no I was not going to unearth this echidna for your viewing pleasure. I have seen there is a resident echidna who lives up at the village lookout but I have never encountered one so close to home in the almost 19 years we have lived here. These small mammals live a mostly solitary life, they burrow, lay a single egg into their pouch and then the puggle hatches and drinks milk from a gland in the mothers pouch and once the spines grow they are out of the pouch eating bugs found with it's beak and very long sticky tongue. A very curious animal that only lives in Australia.