26 October 2008


If you've ever researched on the internet for an assignment or something similar, you'll know not to trust everything you read. It seems some forums though are worse than others for spouting ill informed rubbish.

As Donna and I are getting more and more into caring for birds, I often read various forums looking for information on whatever species we currently have.

Below is Gloria who you may have read about on Donna's blog.

Now Gloria has a habit of hissing at me and clicking her beak when I get too close to her and I was curious about the clicking, so I did a bit of research. I was pretty sure she was threatening me.

Most of the forums that had information about bird behaviour were populated by people that keep birds as pets. Donna and I don't like keeping birds as pets, especially if they're the type that we see flying free in our back yard. You might find that hard to believe if you visited our place at the moment, we currently have six different species of wild birds in either cages or baskets, but they're all destined for freedom eventually.

If I believed some of the people in the bird forums I'd have no fingers left, because they seem to think that the beak clicking is because the bird is glad to see you. They also seem to think it's cute when their pet lorikeet rolls onto its back so they can tickle it.

Wrong! That beak clicking is a threat gesture from what I could find out from more informed sources. Combined with the hissing and the spreading of her wings, Gloria's basically telling me she's about to attack if I don't move away from her. The rolling on the back that lorikeets do is not cute, it's a sign of submission. The poor little bugger's on its back because it's frightened, I've seen enough wild ones do it, both in care and free.

Anyway, that's my little rant over. Now to go and feed the baby figbird.

16 October 2008


Back in January when Donna and I were on our European holiday, we stayed with an aunt an uncle in Haultwick, Hertfordshire.

They had this great egg holder where, when you put eggs in it, the eggs formed the tops of monks' heads. I straight away decided I'd have to see if I could find one when we got back home.

Well I recently managed to find one on eBay and here it is.

Then while looking on eBay a couple of weeks after it arrived I saw a similar one, this time the characters looked like academics, so I put a bid on it and was the only one to do so.

So now we've got plenty of places to put our eggs. I haven't looked recently to see if there are any more like these. We'd end up with a kitchen full of egg holders if I did.

13 October 2008

Here's mud in your eye

It's spring here at the moment, that means spring cleaning.

Last weekend we decided to clean the pond in the backyard. With all the goldfish poo in there it was starting to get a bit yuck and the algae and plants were starting to choke it. We thought we'd clean it out, get rid of the goldfish and put back the tadpoles Donna had rescued from it a couple of weeks earlier.

The easiest way to clean it was to empty it out and then use a broom, so I put on my diving boots and gloves, grabbed a couple of buckets and jumped (stepped very carefully) in.

As the vege garden doesn't have much in it at the moment we put most of the water and fish poo on that, I'd fill the bucket and Donna would empty it.

Once we got as much water out as we could and the fish had all been transferred to another bucket we started to pull out some of the plants. With all the sediment and decayed matter that had built up over the past couple of years in there the plants had quite a bit of mud for their roots to hang onto. As you can imagine, the wet mud made it quite heavy and meant we had to pull it apart into smaller clumps to get it out of the pond.

Donna was beside the pond pulling while I was in there lifting.

At one stage when we had about half of it out I slipped. I did a quick reverse impression of Michael Jackson's moonwalk, put one hand on a huge rock at the side of the pond, and managed to stop myself falling into what little water was left in the bottom and squashing the five marsh frogs that were in there.

Then I heard Donna say, "Thankyou Steven!"

Donna only ever calls me Steven, rather than Steve, for two reasons; when she wants to annoy me, or when I've done something wrong.

When I slipped I'd been holding a small amount of mud and roots in one hand. I think the fact it had broken off might have been what made me slip in the first place.

When I looked up at Donna she was splattered from head to toe with mud, all over her white shorts and white shirt. She'd been standing right in the firing line and caught all of it.

Needless to say, I almost fell over again from laughing.