Kookaburra hunting


I just saw a kookaburra grab a goldfish from the bottom fishpond. The more fish the kookaburras take, the worse the mosquitos will be. Between the kookaburras and the night herons, we are lucky to have a couple of fish left in that pond. The frogs have all been eaten and I’m ready to give up on the pond. There is plenty of cover for the fish to hide but those birds have such sharp eyes.

A few weeks ago, before the kookaburras came, we could see the fish enjoying basking in the sunny spots in the pond. We had managed to trick the night heron (Nankeen) by stringing a tripwire around the top pond. Neighbourhood cats managed to break the tripwire and I also broke it when I was cutting back one of the shrubs right on the edge of the water. The breaks were all fixed up and the top pond seems to have a few fish left.




We don’t really want to buy more goldfish for the kookaburras to eat! Expensive food for these pests. You may not know this, but kookaburras are not native to Western Australia and were brought here from the Eastern States because they are so ‘iconic’ to Australia. They wreak havoc on the small wrens and other small birds, raiding their nests and so on.

splendid fairy wren



Kookaburra hunting

Black Cats and other delights

Lily, looking at a newspaper cutting “How to be a Writer”, scornfully says, “You just pick up a pencil and do some writing!” Her eight-year-old take on the world is clear. She is not afraid to ask if she doesn’t know something, which, I hasten to add, is not often! In my experience, eight-year-old girls are renown for their confidence in knowing ‘everything’.

On Saturday morning, we go for a walk. In a neighbour’s garden we see a black cat. “Black cats are bad luck” she tells me; there is a shadow of doubt in her voice.


“Who told you that?” I ask.

“Melanie,” she replies. “When we walk to school, we go past a house where there is a black cat. Melanie says we must run past because it is bad luck!”

“Oh no!” I reply. “I used to have a black cat called Magic. He was good luck. He had green eyes and when he sat on the lawn, it seemed you could see right through his head.”

Lily considers this for a few minutes. “Was he a good cat?”

“No, he was very naughty and very clever, too. One day he pinched a whole string of sausages off someone’s barbecue and brought them home to share with Czar, the Doberman.” Lily looks suitably impressed.


“What happened then?”

“We all jumped in the swimming pool because we thought Magic had caught a snake.” I tell her.

“Was Magic the boss of Czar?”

“He certainly was,” I reply. “When we used to walk up on Table Mountain, behind our house, Magic would follow us in the bush and then, suddenly, spring out and pounce on Czar!”

“Is he dead now?” I’m not sure how the conversation comes back to death but it usually does.

“Yes, I should say he is, it was a long time ago.”


Black Cats and other delights