Saturday, December 13, 2008

Duelling Banjo's (Limnodynastes dumerili)

One of my favourite frogs, the Pobblebonk, or Banjo frog.

Saturday, December 06, 2008

Crab Spider - Sidymella

Crab Spiders can be easily identified by their pose. Whilst waiting in ambush they position their front four legs out in front of their body. Most are no bigger than 8mm in length.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Purple Swamphen - Porphyrio porphyrio

The Purple Swamp Hen loves swamps, lake margins and shallow slow-moving rivers. Its loud screeches can be heard way before it is seen.

Black Bear


In Canada during late fall (October) Black Bears like this one can be frequently seen engulfing themselves with berries - fattening themselves up for the upcoming winter hibernation.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Black Tailed Prairie Dog (Cynomys ludovicianus)

Their population was once as high as 5 billion, now due to massive poisoning programs from farmers and the cropping of their land, this animals population has plummeted! Naturally these guys numbers were controlled by a wide range of predators including weasels, badgers, rattlesnakes, hawks and eagles. A interesting disease also affects the prairie dogs, the bubonic plague - carried by fleas at the base of their burrow, the same disease that wiped out so many people in the 14Th century.
Prairie dogs alert each other of approaching predators through a series of "yaps" explaining the dog part of their name.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Prairie Rattlesnake (Crotalus viridis)

Upon visiting the hibernaculum in the grasslands national park here in Canada, we stumbled across 50 or more rattlesnakes like this one, As summer ends, up to 1000 rattlesnakes all venture back to these over wintering places where they go underground and intertwine with each other. Other snake species also use the same caves including bull snakes, garter snakes and racers. In days (hopefully) gone farmers used to blow these hibernaculums up with dynamite effectively killing up to 1000 snakes at once and leaving up to 10km square snake free. (not hard to eliminate a species that way eh?

Monday, September 08, 2008

Nutalls Cottontail Rabbit

Coming from Australia where rabbits are a serious pest species, its hard to believe that these guy's are not only native but considered rare here in Canada!! These Nutall's Cottontail rabbits are not the same as the European Rabbit although it would take a trained eye to tell the difference!!!

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Northern Racoon (Procyon lotor)

These guys are amazingly cheeky! I went for a walk last night at about midnight, when i found a family of Racoon's squabbling on a hay bail. After they scattered, i positioned myself on their hay bail and waited. it did not take long until they came back and jumped up on the hay bail next to me (one came within a foot before it saw me). They make a strange purring noise as they walk.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Spring Is Here!!!!

With Spring comes the first glimpses of colour in the bush! This Diuris is a small orchid that was once common around Melbourne.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Chamaeleo calyptratus

The Veiled Chameleon (Chamaeleo calyptratus), is a large species of chameleon found in the mountain regions of Yemen and Saudi Arabia. It is also sometimes referred to as the Yemen Chameleon. Unfortunately as was the case with this dude, many are smuggled into Australia, where most perish. This one was lucky!

Monday, July 28, 2008

Spider boldly declare's Christ!

Well the title says all doesn't it? This is a Sunburst Huntsman (Neosparus spp).
I believe they are a rain forest dwelling species, however i could stand corrected. There is very little information available on this species, but i think it speaks for its self as it displays the cross so boldly on its abdomen.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

The Eye of the Predator

American Alligator's eye's relfect the touch of a true artist God the Creator!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Morelia spilota

Carpet Pythons range extends throughout most of Australia, with the exception being Tasmania. They vary in colour and size, these variations in colours and sizes together with the location determine the sub species. There are six recognised sub species (Centrilian, Jungle, South-Western, Coastal, Inland and North-Western) The one photographed here is the Inland or Murray Darling Carpet Python sub species.

Brown Falcon (Falco berigora)

Although clumsily, the Brown Falcon will chase after small animal prey on foot on the ground. This one however had other prey in mind.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Nephrurus amyae

The Knob tail Gecko (Nephrurus amyae).

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Litoria ewingi Southern Brown Tree Frog


Within the depths of Neil and Liz's garden resides the rambrotious brown tree frog. This little dude enjoys feeding on the insects that are attracted to the lights around their house!


Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Harlequin Bug (Dindymus versicolor)

These little dudes, feed on a variety of vegetation including native and exotic garden varieties. Pairs are often encountered where they are joined at the tail, the female dictating the direction that they walk.

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Endoxyla

The Witjuti grub is not just one such grub, they belong to many species. Some turn into Beetles others into moths like this one from the Endoxyla family. These moths are up to 3 inches in length and can be as thick as a man's thumb.

Saturday, April 05, 2008

Vespula germanica - European Wasp.


I learned a valuable lesson whilst photographing these dudes.. Even when dead, they are still capable of inflicting a nasty sting that itches for days after!

Monday, March 24, 2008

Hair Pins

The hair pin Banksia's flower is quite amazing when viewed in macro.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Spit Fires!

The next time you see a bunch of spitfires on a gum branch, stop for a closer look at the harmless larval stage of some of Australia's wasps.



Sunday, March 16, 2008

Garden Orb Weaving Spider - Eriophora biapicata

The Garden Orb Weaver is truly a master weaver! It carefully and skillfully constructs an amazing web every night only to carefully pull it down the following morning. Webs can be 3 metres in length! Feel privileged if you find these harmless spiders in your back yard!

Atractomorpha spp

Sorry for the reduction in the size of these images, but due to theft of the larger more detailed versions i have had to resort to reducing quality. If you would like the full sized, high quality version of any of my pics please drop me a email on jtscharke@optusnet.com.au


Danaus plexippus - Monarch

The Monarch larvae feed upon the introduced Swan Plant. Their life cycle is amazing, from this stage they shed their skin as they transform into a bright green chrysalis before hatching into the Orange Black and White butterfly!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

The colour of the Floodplains

Lindsay Island in Far North West Victoria. The Thunderstorms broke for long enough to get this picture before the rain made sure the camera did not come out again!



Monday, January 14, 2008

Old Woman

The Old Lady, or Granny moth (Dasypodia selenophora) has a wingspan of 72mm It is often found in houses or under eaves. The Larvae feed upon wattles.