Tag Archives: garigal

Grey Goshawk

Grey Goshawks are a frequent visitor to the area, up until now I’ve not been able to identify or get a good photo of one. Last week I heard the sound of a screeching flock of cockatoos off in the distance, as they got closer the sound got louder. They were swooping and swerving making a huge racket, in front of them was a hawk! It looked like they were chasing it away! A few days later I spotted it sitting in a tree out the back and managed to get these photos.

Very lucky to spot this guy out the back. I don’t know if it’s male or female, the information I found suggests they looks the same although the female is much larger than the male
This Grey Goshawk was spotted out the back, it was looking around for something and didn’t stay still for long
After flying off in pursuit of something I though that was the last I would see of it, but I spotted it again through a gap in the trees in the distance

Grey Goshawks are a medium size bird of prey, local ones have a grey back and upper wings, with a white belly. They have large yellow talons and a yellow, black tipped hooked beak. They prey on mammals like rabbits, possums and bats, also reptiles and insects. Their most common prey is other birds, no wonder the cockies were chasing it away.

References and further reading

Sydney Boronia

Boronia ledifolia

“The hardiest and also the earliest flowering of the local species”¬†– NPOS p.116

Tom was the only one that had been home all Sunday, by late afternoon he had a bad case of cabin fever and demanded to go on a bushwalk, and one he’d never been on before. We took a path that joins¬†the usual route, but past where we normally finish, then ended up doing the river loop in reverse. A few different wild flowers were in bloom, it really felt like the start of spring. I took pictures of these small purple flowers, I had a hunch they were a species of Boronia and I was right. Boronia is another one of those plants that everyone seems to be familiar with except me.

This particular one is a Boronia ledifolia, commonly known as Sydney Boronia. It’s a common plant, abundant in heath and woodland and also the earliest flowering of the local Boronias. The plant itself is small only growing to 1m in height. it’s flowers are four petalled and a sticking pink in colour, approximately 4cm across. Leaves are thin with a waxy shine, deep green in colour with pots and recurved margins.

Sydney Boronia – The first local Boronia to flower. When you see this then spring is on the way

Sydney Boronia

Shorts and t-shirt, must be getting warmer

Resources and references

Heathy Parrot Pea

Dillwynia retorta

“A small, spreading shrub to 1m high”. – NPOS p.78

While revisiting the Prickly Moses I was reminded of a plant that I’d been unable to identify at the time. After some searching I think it’s a Heathy Parrot Pea, Dillwynia retorta.

I wish I’d kept notes on exactly where it was found but It’s clear it’s a pea of some sort from the non symmetrical yellow flowers. The short prickly leaves narrow it down, but it’s the twist in the leaves that is observable is some parts of the photo that make me think it’s the Heathy Parrot Pea.

Heathy Parrot Pea – It’s hard to see but if you bring up the full size image there are some twisted leaves visible

The Heathy Parrot Pea is one of the commonest pea shrubs in the Sydney area. It’s found in heath or woodland growing on sandstone. It’s leaves are about 10mm long, prickly and with a twist in them. Flowers are non symmetrical, yellow with some red parts ( hard to see in my photo )

This one was growing next to and intertwined with a Prickly Moses, it was only that they had different flowers that made me realise they were 2 different plants.

Resources and references