Springtime in Hopetoun.

Just as we bid fare-thee-well to the southern right whales of winter, the fields gave birth to vivid hues of violet, cyan and luminescent yellow.

Over 700 species of wildflowers have drawn thousands of visitors to the renowned and only one of it’s kind, Fitzgerald Biosphere. Hence, my absence from posting, days in the community have been as long as they are enriching. Yesterday morning was a 4:30am wake up to spend a few hours with the most magical mountain, East Mt Barren.

A misty view from the peak of East Mt Barren, Fitzgerald River National Park
Fog referred to above, captured from the below
A strange but beautiful encounter on the way back down… realising my silhouette was surrounded by a circular rainbow.. a very brief moment that hung around long enough for a picture.

Other news will follow soon about artworks and opportunities in motion. But. For now… the main event…

Enoki, the eldest of our duck team

Hareesh and I became pet owners a few weeks ago with six newly hatched Indian Runner Ducks; Enoki, Oyster, Field, Porcini, Shiitake and Button. A friend of mine hatches chickens at this time of year and was able to locate eggs of a breed we’ve always hoped to keep one day. None could be found on the South West Coast of WA so she had them posted “from over east”. After a massive journey they were set to the brooder and out came Enoki first!

Enoki 18/9/22 patiently waiting for his duckling siblings amongst hatching chicks

They’ve been an absolute delight to keep, and their quickly warming to us. The preparations to keep them comfortable have been slightly extreme but we want our new workers to be happy. They’ve begun foraging for the plentiful pests that eat up our garden, snails and moths/larvae mostly. Soon we will have duck eggs, each female (we think there’s three or four), lays 300-350 eggs per year.

Can’t stop, won’t stop, seeking snails
Shiitake shows her angel wings here
An occasional rest under the bottle brush
Bath time after a dirty day out

Growing noticeably every single day, they’re each almost 3 weeks old now.

Their first bath at one week old

Whilst keeping an eager eye out for the cheeky Pied Currawong that lurks nearby, with his interest in ducklings, we’ve been busy in the garden. My most prized achievement has been growing flowers from seed; Cosmos, echinacea, sweet pea and dahlias. Although they’re still tiny, they’re making good progress.

So far so good…

Let’s see how the vegetable seeds go, sown yesterday. Hareesh has made a healthy no dig garden bed — more on that another time.

I hope your spring has also delivered new life, in some way.

“To pay attention, this is our endless and proper work.”

Mary Oliver

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