AUSTRALIAN RAINFOREST BIRDS

SUNDAY 9th MAY 2021 ~ FLASH FICTION 

This is a writing prompt provided by WordPress

PROMPT ~ Landscape
When you gaze out your window — real or figurative — do you see the forest first, or the trees?

Rainbow Lorikeets 

AUSTRALIAN RAINFOREST BIRDS

by John Yeo

  I always look beyond the fringe of trees at the edge of the forest and imagine the birdlife living and existing within. Some of my favourite early morning walks within a forest have been during our visits to our family in Australia. I would take a small video camera and wander around the trails, overawed with the colourful variety of the native bird life.

My walk in the forest this morning was interesting and rewarding. My first encounter was with one of my old friends, a Brush Turkey.

I came across this turkey walking straight towards me along the track, I got a wonderful close-up photograph of him, until he saw me and ran off into the forest. Then as I got to a bridge over a little brook near the main road, I spotted an Ibis and an unusual Heron type wading bird fishing in the brook beneath the bridge at the same time.

   

I took a good photo of the wader and I should be able to research and identify this bird later.   Easily the highlight of my walk came next, when there was a chorus of very loud screeching from a flock of five or six Sulphur Crested Cockatoos that landed on some tall Eucalyptus and Paperbark Tea trees high above where I was standing.

I was able to stand and get some very good pictures of this wonderful sight. A sight that will live in my memory and I will relive over and over again when we get back home to England, through these photographs. The panorama of bird life on display today was not complete even then, as I encountered a pair of Kookaburras high up in the tree canopy and I got some very good photographs of the pair of them together. 

© Written by John Yeo ~ All rights reserved.

FUSION FORESTS

MONDAY 18th JANUARY 2021

This is a response to a Flash Fiction prompt from ‘Putting My Feet In the Dirt’, Writing Prompts hosted by ‘M’.
Which can be found by following the link below..

Prompt ~ Fusion forests

FUSION FORESTS


by John Yeo

   There were six of us in the party led by the esteemed Professor Williams, Peter Woods, a famous ornithologist, Leyla, and Sadie, with her best friend Betty and myself, Jamie Cook.

   We’d been trekking through thick jungle for days, searching for rare new species of wildlife. We pitched our tents alongside an impressive lake with a magnificent waterfall hurtling down into the lake from a rocky incline.

  The lake was still at sunset, after the wildfowl and the birdlife had gone to roost. Silence replaced the noisy sounds of the prolific wildlife, vying for food and personal space. Darkness was descending on the shrubs and trees around the banks of the lake as the sun disappeared. Nocturnal wildlife was slowly appearing. Nighthawks spread their wings, calling in the nearby trees as they ventured out on their hunting forays after dark. Bats were fluttering their wings, searching for insects, using echolocation, their powers of ultra-sensitive hearing, for guidance. 

  ‘They seem to be flying from within the waterfall!’ exclaimed Peter Woods. Clouds and clouds of bats were filling the evening  skies.     ‘There must be a cave in the rocks behind the waterfall. Bats hibernate in caves, they generally stick to water where they like to feed on insects, even fishing them from the surface of pools.’

    ‘We will certainly explore the waterfall tomorrow morning,’  said the Professor.

The next day dawned with a cacophony of sounds from the jungle dawn chorus. We decided to explore the waterfall immediately.

  It was an onerous task for us all, as we climbed the slippery, quite steep, rocky cliffs. We discovered a large aperture in the rock face, partially hidden, somewhat obscured with a thick wall of soaking jungle vegetation. Peter and I, with the help of the Professor, soon hacked a passable entrance to what appeared to be a series of large caves hollowed out of the interior of the rocks.             

   The amazingly beautiful sight that greeted us will always be indelibly engraved on my mind forever. Illuminated by the light of our torches were thousands of pink and aquamarine-coloured stalactites hanging from the roofs of the caves. Sadie and Betty were soon snapping away images on their mobile phones, Leyla gasped, ‘Forests of wonderful stalactites, fused together they’ve probably been growing here for thousands of years,’ 

 There was a powerful obnoxious smell as the floors were covered in guano, obviously the droppings from the thousands of bats roosting in the gaps between the fused stalactites.

  The Professor and his team wrote up their discovery of these incredible fusion forests to great acclaim from the academic world.

The caves became a world heritage site.

© Written by John Yeo ~ All rights reserved