I’m not a great fan of groups, but yesterday I joined the Eurobodalla Naturalists on a birdwatching ramble over Jemisons Headland, hoping to learn something more about my home turf.  I had unaccustomed binoculars hanging around my neck beside my camera and I was already reconciled to the uselessness of the latter when it comes to birds.

It was pretty much as I expected. I stood in the group, peering roughly in the same direction as they were. All I managed to see was the flash of the disappearing birds: three rainbow lorikeets, silver-eyes from Tasmania, red browned finches aka firetails, a hoary-headed grebe, a varied swordgrass brown butterfly, a white-faced heron, a sea eagle and 300 black swans. Except in the case of the sea eagle and the three hundred swans: I can manage to spot size and volume. As well as birds there were butterflies, moths, the odd fungus, and holes that caused debate: probably bandicoots.

It was a perfect day, I chatted amiably about things other than birds, and I cleared group birdwatching off my list of things to become obsessed with.

If I was a better spotter, this is the array of things I would have seen, courtesy of Google image. Gathered like this, using someone else’s eyes and camera, it’s a pretty impressive haul.

If I’m to do the headland justice I probably need to include a bird I often spot in groups early in the morning along a bushy part of the headland track. I’m always especially delighted when I spot red-tailed black cockatoos, which I chose many years ago as my avatar.  (photo from Google image)