Saturday, March 19, 2011

Murchison Magic

Time for sharing something with a bit more positive in the mix. I've put together a photo essay of our time up in Murchison. The montage at the top are just photo's that give an idea of the area. & what it has to offer .The individual photo's below are of some pretty special memories I have of my time there.....with the associated descriptions & stories of course!

A moment that really made my heart happy was watching Gabriela coming back from her first horse ride of any real duration, on Dash, with a huge smile on her face.

Meeting Indie  whom I promptly fell in love with. A wonderfully well behaved girl of mixed parentage (Mastiff/Staffy cross) only a year old & so intelligent & loving.

The next photo is really special. Driving into the horse paddocks my cousin, Mike, spotted a bird in the distance. Initially we thought it might have been a native parrot - Kakapo or Kea perhaps, but as we got closer we saw that it was a raptor as it had prey in it's claws. Mike drove slowly & I took some photo's...wishing more than any other time that I had a decent zoom lens!! I eventually got out of the vehicle to see if I could get in a bit closer still - but this was as close as I could get. (Click on the photo to view at full size)
A bit of an internet search when we got home revealed that this was almost certainly a  New Zealand Falcon -Karearea ( Falco novaeseelandiae)..... a rare & threatened species on the verge of extinction. Mike submitted the photo's to the websites "Wingspan"& "New Zealand Falcon" & both confirmed that it was indeed a young Karearea & asked for the geographical co-ordinates of where it was spotted. We were so privileged to be in the right place at the right time!!

Meet the non-spitty Alpaca. Some time back I mentioned to Mike that I'd love an Alpaca. He promptly assured me they were nasty, smelly things that spat at people. After watching a grown man try to provoke this particular alpaca into spitting by making spitty noises, saying some things that I'm sure would have hurt the alpacas feelings & just behave like a mischievous kid in general - I'm not so sure that I believe him. All the alpaca deigned to do was give him "the look"!

Follyfoot Farm (that's what the neighbours call Mike & his wife's  menagerie of animals) & that is just what they looked like following me in after I'd opened the gate to one of the upper paddocks! I love this photo!

Horses are amazing animals. These three knew that their dinner was on the way, they were waiting for us at the gate when arrived & had started following the car to the back paddock knowing that Kris comes in around this time with their feed. I was on gate duty & had told Kris to go ahead & I'd walk up after shutting the gate. When I turned around & looked up I was absolutely delighted to see these 3, Dash, Starlight & Abby just standing there looking at me as if to say "well hurry up , are you coming or not" instead of having trotted off quickly after the car as they usually do!

Gabriela enjoying Gidget & Jazz. One very contented kiddo & two very happy dogs! Yep - that made my heart happy too.

My last sight of the horses just before I left to come home. I'd offered to go up & take their covers off & let them into the big paddock while Kris was at work. What a perfect scene.

It was so difficult to leave... I procrastinated for as long as I could & left mid afternoon to drive home. By way of compensation on the way home I found a place to stop & take photo's of the magnificant West Coast bush.


Marcy Lamberson said...

I loved reading this post. thank you for taking us along on your visit.

Patty said...

Magically good medicine, Deb. And that falcon is incredibly handsome.