The prodigal platypus and water heights

To: "Birding Aus" <>
Subject: The prodigal platypus and water heights
From: "Bill Jolly" <>
Date: Sat, 1 Dec 2001 08:21:12 +1000
During that long dry spell - which seems to be over - the creek dropped so
much that we had Black-fronted Dotterels nesting!

As they say, it's an ill wind. During dry times Nankeen Night-herons land in
the creek bed in front of the house to feed the margins, and we would be
visited by spoonbills and other shallow water birds.

Platypus are regular when the creek has anything like a normal depth of
water, even down to just a couple of feet. But, when the water depth gets
down too low, they move upstream to pools out of the view of the verandahs,
and we always just gradually begin to worry whether they'll come back!

However, we've had good rain over the last week which brought the creek back
to a 1 to 2 metre depth on Wednesday. And on Thursday morning there was a
platypus feeding, floating legs akimbo, and rolling back under the surface,
just as if it had never been away.

So, it can't fly and it doesn't have feathers, but I really just have to
share my joy yet again at the return of the prodigal platypus.

Bill Jolly

Lockyer Valley, Queensland.

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