These trees are in the Gariwerd National park in Western Victoria in Australia. This is an ancient mountain range formed millions of years ago through geological upheaval. The forests are also ancient and regenerate after regular fires usually caused by lightning but occasionally by humans. For thousands of years, we are not sure how many, but possibly 30-40,000 at least, Indigenous Australians lived within these ranges and respected the flora and fauna. There are many thousands of years old rock art galleries sharing the culture of the Indigenous people throughout Gariwerd. Rock art sites are still occasionally discovered by current scientists that indicates the wild nature of some sections of this area . The haiku in this Haibun is a response to RonovanWrites #Weekly #Haiku #Poetry Prompt #Challenge #273 Forest&Whisper go to https://ronovanwrites.com/2019/09/30/ronovanwrites-weekly-haiku-poetry-prompt-challenge-273-forestwhisper/#comments and see lots of other haiku responses to this challenge from Ronovan.
One hundred metres down the street from our home these photos show where a suburban house and garden once stood for over 60 years, where families shared their lives, where plants once grew and died , where birds, animals and insects co-existed in nature. Now all gone.A desert of flat dozed lifeless dirt. Already foundations are being created to build fence to fence double story townhouses and concrete hard surface and maybe a few plants in pots. Gone is a local history and an ecosystem, not an original one but an ecosystem that saw many indigenous life forms existing. Through the gap in the rear fence where green weeds grow the same thing happened last year and over that next street the same again. This is happening all across our suburb and in neighbouring suburbs and on and on in Melbourne Australia. Population growth demanding new dwellings and a greed from property developers to squeeze as many living spaces on a block of land as possible means vegetation and fauna loss on an increasing scale. We have noticed the little birds have disappeared from our garden and that is one small sign. Our local government is unable to limit or control this madness, this environmental destruction. As well the loss of trees and shrubs adds to global warming. Maybe these images sum up Australia’s attitude as a nation to global warming. No chance for haiku !!!!!!
A couple of weeks ago Jill and I were sitting in the garden eating our lunch when this baby Pied Butcherbird flew in and landed on a branch above us. It then flew to the ground and began demanding something to eat. All we could offer this young carnivore were a few pieces of tinned tuna. That was enough to curb the appetite and it flew back to the branch and had a short sleep. This is the first young one of that species we have seen. When small birds are breeding in Spring adult Butcherbirds raid nests after fledglings. This baby looks cute however it is destined to become a feared marauder in our neighbourhood. The other curious fact about the visit was the time of year. We are almost to Winter and we have had visits from a young Butcherbird, then fledgling Little Wattlebirds and some young looking Magpies during this last month. One more pointer to the effects of Climate Change?
Looking across the downtown area of New Zealand’s capital city Wellington. This has to be one of the most picturesque capital cities in the world. Both views are from the Botanic Gardens. Everywhere you look are hills and trees with the city stretching around bays and up valleys giving people views from almost anywhere they are. Even the international airport is aesthetic with a single runway stretching across an isthmus. Only Hobart in Tasmania and Nagasaki in Kyushu Japan approach Wellington for my top city awards and both are located in similar topography. There is so much to see and do in Wellington and all in a relaxed lifestyle.
Three weeks ago on a wet cold Tuesday afternoon 40-50 local people gathered to hear for the first time that a planned new school re-development would mean 239 trees across the site would be destroyed. A story of secrecy , deception, lies and secret agreements was shared. These people swore to meet again on the site 2 days later to plan a response . This is image 1 and more people and dogs were there. We learnt that the state government department of education intended to begin destruction of the trees the following Monday morning. The people that afternoon declared to stand in the way of this destruction at 6.30 on the Monday morning. Television stations and newspapers were contacted and the rally cry went out.
Image 2 shows part of a 300 plus crowd who blocked entry to the site at 6.30 on the Monday. There were many police there as well. For the first time the bureaucrats negotiated with the local residents about these plans. The people said no trees until we have open transparent community discussions and we hear and see detailed plans of what is proposed. Two weeks later , the trees stand and the people wait for our meeting.
So even on a smaller scale here in Melbourne Australia we see politicians and bureaucrats trying to walk over communities with a lack of respect and no transparency.
People power in Australia have an anthem called “From little things big things Grow” Sometimes our politicians need to remember it. If you have time please listen to this song https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dAONlfoNVuY sung by Paul Kelly and Kev Carmody , two living music legends in Australia.
We have been putting seed sticks in a tree at the front of our house mainly for the Crested pigeons who have appeared in earlier blogs. The sticks are sold as parrot and budgerigar sticks however the Pigeons believe the manufacturers have left them off the labels. Three days ago these two Crimson Rosellas began turning up. Its amazing how they can detect the location of this food as they fly in the vicinity. We have been hearing Eastern Rosellas and noticed a pair feeding in street trees near our back yard. These Crimsons are not as common around our suburb, they are more a country/hills and mountains bird. The top one is an adult and the bottom one a juvenile, notice the mottled green plumage that is missing from the adult. Its an unusual combination but most likely a mating pair, the age difference may not be too much , anyway thats just a guess. The parrots are all nesting or looking for sites. This pair have turned up regularly late morning and mid afternoon for 3 days. The crested pigeons have vacated the tree to feed and clean up what drops to the ground as the Rosellas feed. The adaptability and intelligence of our birds in Australia is amazing. They also quickly learn to trust humans , the pigeons come to my call and follow me around on the ground like tame chickens.
On our last walk in the Bendigo Regional Park two weeks ago where Charlie loved to roam we began to discover the early signs of Spring, mainly the first native Orchids, other small indigenous plants in flower, Bendigo Wax Flower , Wattles blooming and increasing bird activity. These images show from top, a curious Dusky Wood Swallow, a small plant yet to be identified and a beautiful native orchid that we think is a Blue Caladenia. Both these flowers are about the size of the tip of your little finger. I was only carrying my 150-500 telephoto for birds so the flowers are captured macro style on 500 at a distance of about 2 metres, something I had not tried before.
This is my contribution to the 52 week PHOTO CHALLENGE, with RICH this weeks word challenging a talented group of photographers from across the globe. Visit this challenge at https://daffodilwild.wordpress.com/photo-challenge/ and find this weeks sharing on Wild Daffodil’s Home page.