Sunday, January 10, 2010

You know it's hot when . . .

You know it's hot when:

You're old horse literally volunteers for a wash . . .28 years young and absolutely loving the bath. Seriously, I was using the hose to clean out their water trough and up he came, let me spray him with water. I only had to tie him up to wash his face! The violet shampoo brings out the white. He looks a bit embarrassed about being seen in purple though don't you think? Of course the other one wasn't coming anywhere near the hose and it was too hot to bother chasing him. He can stay filthy.

Dragonflies adhere to your cool kitchen walls for respite . . . .Normally found hovering over the pool in the heat, my kitchen had about five of them yesterday, remaining perfectly still, just hanging, keeping cool. As soon as the sun went down, they were off on their merry way, except for one who got stuck my Japanese lamp and was released at 3am this morning due to flapping and buzzing.


The skinks have a field day with dead flies . . . I didn't crop this so that you can see the size of these little guys compared to the castors on our typing chair. I have three regulars inside the house. Yes INSIDE during the summer months. This one is number 2 and fighting for supremacy with fat bat number 1 who proved a little camera shy today. Number 3 doesn't get a look in and is still not prepared to have his photo taken. They eat the dead flies and Christmas beetles, spiders, mosquitoes and pretty much any bug that drops around the skirting boards and window tracks. I 'euthanased' a rather large spider the other night but left it on the carpet and no trace of its carcass in the morning. No wonder they're getting bigger and fatter! They're Eastern Skinks and drop their tails as an escape mechanism when cornered but these fellows rule the roost with absolute confidence. Only once has Lily got close enough to scare one into dropping a wiggly tail but it grew back by the following summer. I know which one it is because there's a slight 'join' where the new tail has grown. Hot tip . .don't vacuum their poo until it's completely dry! Hmm really must clean under that filing cabinet.

Blue Tongue lizards crave the shade . . .These are my absolute favourites. Normally in the sunshine but this one had been cornered by birds in my front border. We rescued a baby from Clare's bedroom just before Christmas. This is still a youngster, very shiny, clean with no battle scars and brave enough to come close to the house. Very docile. Easy to catch and quite happy to be handled as long as you support its belly. They do hiss and stick out their blue tongues but can I get one to do it when I have a camera in my hand? They're often mistaken for snakes, especially if you just sight their tail. They're pretty big. 18-24 inches long, and chunky dudes, slow moving and an easy target for predators which is why I don't own a cat. They're also an asset to the garden, they eat aphids, snails and slugs . . .


Bearded dragons don't freeze but scarper for the trees . . . Now this little treasure is a bearded dragon that I just happened to spy from my computer desk. He had his head raised among the leaf litter on the lawn and I went to investigate. Normally they freeze in the face of a predator until truly frightened then take off like a rocket. This guy let me take three photos and that was it . . up a tree in lightening speed . . .

There are probably hundreds of them but how would you know. Just look at that camouflage!

And finally . . clean bony boy, no more dreadlocks:


I should look so good at his age!
Now, to get that purple shampoo out of my fingernails before work tomorrow and vaccum up the skink poo. An hour later and the dragon is still in the tree yelling "You can't see me, I iz invizible"

47 comments:

Ocean Girl said...

Wow Baino, you live in the wild. The group at Sundays in My City would love to see this, although I know most of them visit you anyway.

You must have been real patient and quick to be able to take the pictures.

JeffScape said...

I don't wanna hear about your heat. I'm freezing my ass off in this hemisphere. :P

Baino said...

Ocean Girl, I actually live bang in the middle of a huge suburb but have a lot of land unlike everyone else. You must have the same sort of stuff in your garden. I remember geckos in the centre of Bangkok. Never got bitten by a mozzie in my hotel room thanks to the paddy footed ones. Photos of the bigger lizards are easy because they don't move. They just pretend you can't see them.

Jeff . . then move! I'd give anything for a big New York Overcoat and a fireplace right now. I'm not built for the heat.

JeffScape said...

I AM moving!

nick said...

Well, doesn't he look fabulous after his wash and shampoo? I love that long, graceful neck. He's lucky to be looked after so well. I like to fantasise about moving to Oz but not sure how I'd cope in those soaring temperatures....

Candie Bracci said...

Amazing pictures!I love your horse,beautiful!Yeah well here we are covered of snow!Have a nice day Baino!:)

Joyful Jo said...

Hi,
Your photo reminded me of the blue tongue lizzard i used to have as a sort of pet in our suburban garden when i was a girl. Now it is hard to see any at all nowadays.
I'm in victoria Melbourne.

Mim said...

wow..wow! Even when it's hot here we don't have dragons and skinks. Bony horses we have, and they do like a good wet hose on a hot day. But still - I am looking out at a foot of snow and at this time of the year can't remember at all the heat of summer.

Come visit! the snow is calling you

Baino said...

Jeff . travel well my friend. I have a couch if you need one!

He is my lovely lad Nick. Looking a little weather worn and doesn't have the muscle tone of his youth but he's a lovely chatty old soul. Amazingly, tonight, it's cool.'

Isn't he lovely Candie. Not as beautiful as when I bought him at 12 years old but he's such a gentle boy. And he talks like a siamese cat. I can/t walk up to the fence without Laurie mumbling.

Welcome over JJ. I haven't tried to keep any as pets but I love seeing them in the garden and I've never had a problem with snails. I guess it depends where you are. They're still around Mwlbourne I'm reliably told.

Haha poor old soul is losing muscle tone (aren't we all) but he's happy, healthy and now clean! Oh Mim, my best friend is heading to Colorado to ski next week and we just had a lovely barbie in the warm evening. I'm so jealous. I wish I could afford to go with her.

Grannymar said...

I would melt in that heat! My snow is no longer pristine, it is all animal tracks... other peoples cats, dogs and the birds which I don't mind.

Roy said...

Hmmmm... Visitors here tend to be furry rather than scaled, although I have seen garter snakes and ribbon snakes, and I'm sure there are salamanders in the streams around here in the Summer. But visitors to house and garden usually are small, furry, and have long tails. And rather than being welcomed into the house, on sight of them exterminators are called immediately. Mice probably wouldn't bother me, and an occasional bat using the attic as a warm bed, but I draw the line at rats!

Kathy G said...

Such exotic visitors to your house! In the 18 years we've been in this house, I've seen a snake once or twice, but no lizards.

CatLadyLarew said...

What a beautiful horse! We're freezing our asses off here in the northern hemisphere... glad to hear somebody's warm!

Carole said...

The thought of having reptiles (wild) in the house is so foreign to me. In fact, I'd probably freak if I saw one crawling across my living room. You have all the poisonous stuff too! The only creatures inside my home in the Yukon is a big black mutt who likes to eat and sleep. But watch out for the mosquitos in the summer! lol

blackwatertown said...

To echo an earlier comment - Wow. Hope your reptiles. lizards etc keep the snakes away. Shudder.
Great pics.

otin said...

I really do not know if I could deal with all of the lizards. They kind of creep me out. I think I am more comfortable with the bugs.

The horse is beautiful, as are all of the photos that you take!!

Brian Miller said...

sounds like a wondrful day...high here is 21 degrees...we had lizards like that all over the place in florida when we lived there. wonderful looking horse.

Tom said...

thanks for a tour of your zoo...love the scaley dudes...too cold here for anything like that...but on the plus side we don't have a big problem with insects either.

California Girl said...

your horsey is pretty all clean and white. Love the purple shampoo. People here like to dye their animals for holidays. I have a pet shampoo/play day client who appeared on our live show yesterday (for the tv channel I work for) and she was touting pink for Valentine's. jeez. as for the bugs & critters, seems like if the bugs are adhering to the walls, the critters will hae a better shot unless they're too hot to try.

Megan said...

I want a skink!

K8 the Gr8 said...

Great photos!!!

I was beginning to fall in love with the idea of getting a ferret, but that freaky-tongued lizard has totally distracted me. He would save me a fortune in venus-fly traps every summer.

Leah said...

Your photo posts are so much fun!

And your horse is gorgeous. Just look at that mane.

Ribbon said...

I enjoyed this and felt the heat as I know it well.

I absolutely adore the final photo of your beautiful horse. So lovely Baino. What a treasure.

best wishes for some cooler weather
Ribbon :)

PS... but i do love summer

tattytiara said...

Oh! Kay! Not my imagination! That horse was purple! Good!

Lookin' gorgeous all dried off, too.

Gotta say that is the absolute coolest photo of a dragonfly I've ever seen.

Good luck with the heat!

River said...

Monday, 5pm, day four of 40*+ heat. I'm dying....
Supposed to get a cool change coming in sometime tonight.
Laurie looks gorgeous, all white and fluffed mane.

Gledwood said...

Now that is a giant Trotter Donkey ...!

Alan Burnett said...

I gave posted off a parcel of snow and ice to you. Please send a box of sunshine in return.

i beati said...

I'd like 10 degrees that's all is that so much to ask pretty boy !!name ?

laughingwolf said...

methinks i'll take our -13C nights and -6C days to oppressive heat!

Renee said...

Always an adventure and so different from my yard of white snow.

xoxo

Ropi said...

I hate horseback riding. It hurts where males hate it the most. :P

She Writes said...

Beautiful pictures, but the warmth is hard to imagine! I ahve a heater at my feat as I write.

kj said...

holey moley hells! all these creatures i have never seen even once in my neck of the woods! and a purple horse....

does your horse hug back? i am serious.

i saw mim's comment about coming. i think we should start planning. what do you think of that? surely money can't stop us once we put the intention out into the universe. right?

:)

Not The Rockefellers said...

First time here and I am loving the warmth..please send some to New England...immediately!

Peace ~ Rene

Rowe said...

Helen, I'm loathing the heat, too. I find it quite oppressive. Have to say though, glad I'm not in SA or Melbourne at the moment. Now that would really sting.

Colette Amelia said...

Great shots! Now all those lizards in the house!!! I don't know about all those crawlies. You have a lovelie white lad indeed...

warmed right up here to a balmy 10 degrees celcius today and melted all the snow.

I am thinking you are a lucky girl indeed living in paradise you do!

jay said...

I loved this post.

Your old bony boy doesn't look too bony to me, for his age! He looks damned good! We used to use blue tinted shampoo for our white dogs, but I bet the violet works better!

I didn't know that the skinks ate dead insects! Now I want one (or three) of my own. And I love the blue-tongued lizard too. The bearded dragon isn't so cute, to me, but he'd be very welcome in the garden for all that! ;)

Kate said...

I love to see lizards - they fascinate me!
Only ever see them on holiday tho - your boy looks beautiful after his shower.... It is still freezing cold here - you'd love it!!!!

VE said...

Boy...I wish I got sponge baths...

unstranger said...

Smashing stuffBaino, this singular post tells me more about Australia than anything I've found anywhere else; ever!
How weird is that?

Jen Chandler said...

Wow! You've got some awesome and interesting visitors there, Baino! Bearded Dragons? I love it! And your horse looks lovely with his shiny mane!

Stay in the shade!
Jen

English Mum said...

What lovely photos, Baino. I just even imagine what sunshine would feel like on my face, although it looks as though the snow is finally melting...

Hmmm,does that violet shampoo work on blondes by any chance...?

English Mum said...

CAN'T even imagine, I mean.

Damn this alzheimers.

Terence McDanger said...

I'm just staggered at the menagerie of exotic creatures you have in your back garden. I'd run a mile if I saw any of them!

Renee said...

You are amazing and I want to thank you for sharing with me. You are a wonderful friend.

Love Renee xoxo

Jill said...

OH MY! Doesn't your horse look grand following his shampoo?? Just so beautiful!

Ces said...

Eek! Reptiles amongst our noble horse and magical dragonfly.