food check


rein them in

when birds quest for food

emus win


The Emus at Tower Hill are top of the pecking order when it comes to food. This Game reserve near Warrnambool and Port Fairy in Western Victoria Australia is a series of puzzles.

First it is one of 2 examples in the world of a volcano that has re exploded and blown itself to pieces. There is a huge inner area surrounded by the rim of the volcano, there are large waterways enclosed within this rim and a central peak like an island. Known as a nested maar it is the largest extinct volcano in Victoria. This makes it rare.

Secondly a succession of state governments have invested in the re vegetation and restocking of native fauna in this reserve. You would expect them to be safe.

People would expect to discover this park would be a national park or even a heritage site given the geological rarity. But it is not.

But no, this place is a state game reserve which means every year the state government allows people, (basically men) with guns to come here in the duck season and blast this peaceful place in their pursuit of killing ducks.

The duck season is a hang over from the colonial past when men with guns could freely shoot and  and try to kill living creatures, usually ducks.

Why people want to have guns and shoot to kill living animals intrigues me. I think basically it is license to practice the art of psychopathy.

This is my contribution to RonovanWrites Weekly Haiku Poetry Prompt Challenge 98    Rein & Quest where you can read haiku by gifted poets from all over the world by clicking on

And it is also my contribution to the 52 week photo challenge ( this week CHECK) accessed at  where you can see some fascinating CHECK photos

21 thoughts on “food check

    1. Thanks Agnes they are fascinating birds and not at all aggressive however they can be quite menacing as in standover tactics when wanting food if they are used to people feeding them

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Oh, Denis you and I are so on track, love when you let it all out like this lol! Great pics of emus, must be cool to see one up close! Or even within point and shoot (lens) distance! Way to go buddy. Thanks for sharing.


    1. Thanks for all that Laura, I don’t know how you and most of your compatriots put up with the gun culture!! These birds were close as in touch them. They are very tame as there are tourists around this park all the time. Still a few distraction from getting into sketching!!!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Personally, I despise it Denis and there are many more like me, but sadly, we don’t get much news coverage. I used to always have more important things than art too. I made it a priority only when my health began to require it. I can’t remember if I recommended the book “Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain” to you? It’s a classic by Betty Edwards. There are many short, simple exercises, would likely be pretty easy to fit in to your schedule – just one at a time. I’d be surprised if your library didn’t have it. I think if you’re anything like me, you may find tremendous stress relief with a regular sketching habit. Remember, no one can sit down and play a concerto. It takes time, but it’ll reward you many times over. Peace to you and yours.


        1. You did recommend Betty’s book Laura. I ordered both the book and workbook from the UK. They have finally arrived and I am soon to begin self learning, although I enjoyed art in junior Secondary classes. I will keep you informed when I begin, procrastinations overcome!!

          Liked by 1 person

  2. I don’t remember ever seeing an emu so thanks for the experience. The amber eye is quite nice. I grew up in a hunting family and it was just something that was done. When I moved apart from it I never gave it much thought. Now that I am I know I could never shoot an animal myself. A very thoughtful post Denis. And nice haiku also.


    1. Thanks Melissa. I grew up in a rural, “shoot it if it moves ” community, and look back on that aspect of my childhood with horror. I think in those days animals were not considered to have lives and feelings. Things have changed a lot here in Australia generally, (there is still work to do) but on the bigger scale whole sections of the globe are still disconnected from nature, especially animals.


  3. Lucky, lovely birds, emus. Just don’t go between them and their dinner. 😉 Thank you for another great haiku, wonderfully complemented….and for your comments regarding the gun culture and shooting for sport. I’ve never understood it, nor will I ever.


  4. Hi Denis,
    Nice work on the haiku. You do have some interesting animals / birds in your neck of the woods. We have men with guns too, ALSO children with guns. Last week an 8 year old boy brought one to school. They were ready to hang his parents out to dry till they discovered it belonged to his 13 year old friend!!!
    Thank goodness nobody got hurt, this time.


    1. Thanks Pat, we are lucky with our fauna, however a croc got another tourist in Northern Queensland last night. I won’t say any more on guns except scrap them.


  5. Hi Denis! I don’t understand hunting either, especially for sport. Great pictures! I’ve never seen these birds before. I thought they were ostriches at first glance. I liked your haiku too. 😀


  6. Hey great article, nicely written! Ive just visited South Africa and the Emu’s and Ostriches have certain similarities 🙂

    Also check out my blog about my first season as a beater! check it out at


I would love to read your thoughts about this post

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.