Looking back over a year’s photographs, I can usually tell when my mother and her partner have come to stay – I generally take a lot more bird photographs. It’s a lot easier when Mum and Allen are pointing them out for me so I can take the photo, and then identifying them for me. Effortless birdwatching.

Mum was sporting a new camera this time, the Nikon D90 with that beautiful 18 – 200mm lens, which I was particularly envious of every time my birdwatching lens, the budget 70 – 300mm, groaned away trying to focus. I feel a bit sorry for that lens, everything is such an effort for it. But I do appreciate the distance you can be from your subject with the 300mm reach, as well as the $150 price tag. And if I take enough photos, and the light is right, I can still get some gorgeous shots.

That’s a grey fantail in the backyard – a lucky shot, as it was perched so nicely in the light, and flew away a moment later.

One of our kookaburras – we have three that live around the house, which I think are a pair with perhaps last year’s baby. I think the last residents of the house used to feed them, judging by the number of perching posts and feeding spots around the house, and the way the kookaburras like to sit and watch you when you’re sitting on the verandah, slowly turning their head one way and the other but always keeping you in view.

This Variegated Fairy-wren was another lucky shot, at Berrinba Wetlands in Logan. This was about the only clear and nicely composed shot of about 20 that I took as she flitted around from branch to branch. I think I really only got this because she had paused and was trying to eat the moth or insect that she’s got in her beak.

We had a great afternoon in the Berrinba Wetlands, which is a fairly new and busy park – not so much a birdwatching park really, despite the wetlands, but a great park to go to with kids and bikes, as there’s lots of wide paths for riding and picnic spots. I’d like to go walking there again, perhaps in the early morning, and see if there’s a greater variety of water birds (as we only saw a few ducks).

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