Meanwhile, back at Boot Hill

To: "Canberra Birds" <>
Subject: Meanwhile, back at Boot Hill
From: "John Layton" <>
Date: Tue, 26 Feb 2008 13:49:24 +1100
Last Saturday morning, while on a leisurely day trip to Yass, we stopped by at Hall Cemetery because it proved quite birdful back on 13 February. First up, brat bounded about brandishing butterfly net, releasing all she caught on the pretext, "I've already got some of those."
I deftly caught a big, bull grasshopper but it was rejected. "I collect lepidoptera, that's an orthopteron. Don't you know the difference?" came the cheeky response. "How would you like to collect a good smack," I said, releasing Brer Hopper to sally forth and propagate a plague. After 15 minutes, butterfly-hunting brat folded her flutterbye net and we birded for 40 minutes.
Although only 8:30am, there weren't many birds abroad. Lowlight: two Spotted Doves. Highlights: two immature Diamond Firetails. Overhead, 12 Sulphur-crested Cockatoos followed by three Little Corellas. Two feeding-groups of Red-rumped Parrots, totaling some forty individuals. Pair of male & female Scarlet Robins. Two Eastern Yellow Robins. Ten Black-faced Cuckoo-shrikes on the wing. In an adjacent field, a flock of 18 Magpie-larks.
"Here's where I saw the baby rabbits last time," I said, as we walked past a dilapidated grave, but the bunnies were still underground. A few moments later, we saw four half-grown, feral kittens (cats) sunning atop a tombstone. As we approached, they dived off and disappeared underneath. Someone (not me) should do a survey of the subterranean fauna of the Hall graveyard.
A few moments later, Linda stopped, pointed and yelled, "G.I. Joe!"
"What?" I said, not immediately discerning what she was on about. "G.I. Joe Blake! Look!!"
There, not five metres in front of us, flattened out on the path as it soaked up the morning sun, lay a 1.5 metre Common Brown Snake. "We'll take the other path," I said, but was talking to myself, brat having already taken the initiative.
John K. Layton
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