Monday, 23 January 2012

Jottings from the Tropics: 23 January 2012

One of the lesser sooty owls is coming off my Christmas card list.

I finally fell asleep last night some time after 2a.m. Only to be woken at 4.30 a.m. by an owl calling not two metres from my bedroom window. The words, ‘shut up’, did not have an effect on the bird. Neither did ‘shut up, you [deleted] owl,’ which I uttered in case the [deleted] owl thought I was talking to the possums.

I found a torch and shone it on the [deleted] owl, which blinked and then turned its back on me, barely missing a beat. It stopped calling a few minutes before 5.30 a.m. By this time I was wide awake and plotting my revenge. I plan to stand under its roost and talk loudly. That’ll fix it. And if it doesn’t, I’m selling that [deleted] owl to Hogwarts.

- o O o -

On the subject of rainforest sounds, I can pick the location of the big quandong just from the hum of insects flying around its flowers. This is not a particularly useful skill. It is much easier to identify a quandong by looking for a huge tree with feathery white flowers, bright blue fruit or a lichen-encrusted branch dropping towards your head, depending on the time of year. Still, it’s a pleasant sound and is mostly restricted to the daylight hours.

- o O o -

Contractors working for Ergon (our electricity supplier) will be around soon to trim back the vegetation from the power lines. The tree loppers are generally very careful with their work and don’t hack out great swathes of greenery. Their limit is three metres either side of the lines.

One of the contractors dropped in today to check with me about removing a few small trees that were leaning out from inside my property boundary. They were white cedars and black wattles, which are abundant and fast-growing pioneer species, so I had no concerns about them being cut down. So it will be noisy here for a few days as the loppers chop and mulch along the edge of the road. But they'll be chopping and mulching in daylight hours. [Deleted] owl, take note.


Thomas said...

Squirt gun? (for the owl, not the contractors, but your call.)

Snail said...

I thought about that, but it involves getting out of bed. (I have a fixed screen across the window.)

It might work better with the contractors, although there's less of a reason to do it to them. You know, apart from sheer devilment.