Monthly Archives: September 2006

Fundraiser for the mural…

Fishpond Animated

If you live downunder and are contemplating buying books, music, software and the like online, please take a look at fishpond. Just click on the banner in this post or the unobtrusive little badge on the right so that we can get a commission. I’ve used these guys before and I got excellent service and the prices and shipping were really competitive.

Any and all monies earned will be donated towards the project to help cover costs.

Remember Christmas is coming soon! 😛

The Enigmatic Echidna…

Tasmania Trip – Day 4 – Echidna on the road, originally uploaded by K&S.


The echidna is one of only two surviving monotremes, the other being the platypus. The Australian echidnas belong to the Tachyglossus genus and the three surviving Zaglossus species are found in New Guinea.





Echidna, originally uploaded by GeoWombats.


As well as finding them wandering across roads and across people’s backyards, you can find them anywhere there are ants and termites and its not too hot.



Echidna, originally uploaded by Uhlenhorst.

Echidnas breed during the cool of winter. The males line up behind a potential mate and form a train.

Echidna trains can last anywhere up to 6 weeks before mating eventually happens. During this time the echidnas can be seen walking, foraging and just simply resting together.

Echidna trains can have any number from 2-11 echidnas, though 3 to 4 is more usual. The males sometimes move from one train to another.

The males follow the female and sometimes make advances by nudging her tail or side with their nose. When the female signals that she’s ready to mate another colourful display of the echidna’s sexual behaviour begins the mating rut.




echidna_puggle_1, originally uploaded by Julia G.

Monotremes are egg-laying mammals. The female echidna lays a single soft-shelled, leathery egg twenty-two days after mating and deposits it directly into her pouch. Hatching takes ten days; the young echidna, called a puggle, then sucks milk from the pores of the two milk patches (monotremes have no nipples) and remains in the pouch for forty-five to fifty-five days, at which time it starts to develop spines. The mother digs a nursery burrow and deposits the puggle, returning every five days to suckle it until it is weaned at seven months.




Echidna, originally uploaded by badoo_tealeaf.


Note the blue beads on this one for identification purposes. Despite being relatively common, the solitary habits of this critter means that we don’t know a lot about it.



Shuffling In The Undergrowth, originally uploaded by MykReeve.


By Crikey, check out that cocky!

A Visitor at Sunset, originally uploaded by bluemist57.


The Sulphur Crested cockatoo is probably the best known of Australia’s fourteen cockatoo species. You can’t miss this bird’s raucous screech. Very common in the North and Eastern parts of Australia.



Yellow-tailed-Black-Cockatoo, originally uploaded by ‘Stephen’.


The round yellow mark on the ear-coverts and pale-yellow panels on the upper surface ofthe tail are the key features for this bird of SE Australia.



Galahs & Cockatoo, originally uploaded by Donina.

Galahs are very common in Australia. You can tell the boys from the girls by looking them in the eye. Boys have brown eyes, girls have red. A supportive Dad who feeds the broody would-be Mum and does some of the incubating himself. And he will take on raptors such as kestrels and falcons with his mates.



Major Mitchell Cockatoos, originally uploaded by WindeBabe.

Aka the Pink Cockatoo. Note the gorgeous sunset pink underwing and undertail. Most commonly found in arid areas. Heaps around the Alice!



Anatomy of the wing – Sulphur Crested Cockatoo, originally uploaded by aaardvaark.



Black Cockatoo, originally uploaded by Timmy Toucan.

Actually a Red-tailed Black Cockatoo. And because of the spots it has to be either female or a young male. The Tiwi Islands people say the spirits of the dead are accompanied by these birds on their way to heaven; the screams warning of another spirit is coming.




Gang-gang Cockatoo., originally uploaded by Brenda-Starr.

This is a bloke because he has a bright red untidy crest. The girls have a grey head and crest and don’t go for the bed-head look. Must be a South-Eastern Australia thing? 😉



black palm cockatoo, originally uploaded by shimmertje.


Northern Australia’s rain forests for this one particularly the Cape York region. This one is excited about something because the facial skin is red instead of the usual pinky-orange. He’s blushing!


Long-Billed Corella, originally uploaded by loma_prieta.


The Dampier cockatoo. Check out that bill! And it has a pink mark across the throat and a pinkish tinge to the underfeathers. You should look out for this bird if you visit Perth.


…and MY favourite, berries!, originally uploaded by aaardvaark.


The Little Corella. The important features are the short white bill. the pink stain between the bill and eye, and the pink tinge to the underfeathers. There shouldn’t be a pink bar across the throat – if you do see that you’ve found a Long-bill/Little Corella hybrid and its probably infertile.



Glossy black Cockatoo, originally uploaded by beeater.


Check out this bloke’s tail feathers! You’ll probaby see this one in a Casuarina tree if this uncommon bird makes an appearance for you.




And just WHO are these mosaic addicts?

Almost complete, originally uploaded by GeoWombats.

Well, I’m Donna and I’m the person who volunteered to set up the blog so I figure that I’d better put my money where my mouth is since I agreed with Sandy’s idea of Mosaic Addicts doing a little bio post on themselves. This is a picture of me in June this year with my very first mosaic just waiting to be grouted. The turtle was inspired by Tongan ngatu designs which are a part of my heritage. Yep, I’m an absolute beginner and enthusiastic amateur. I’m constantly learning and my ideas are always way, way, way ahead of my skills and experience.
The lesson learned from this mosaic is that pool tiles are really hard to break! And draw in your borders right from the beginning before you stick anything down LOL.
I like taking photos and if you check out my flickr pages there is a set about mosaics I have photographed in Darwin, Australia.
I also keep a mosaics themed blog which started as a place to file away pics of great mosaics, useful information etc and which now seems to have a regular following.
I’m a great believer in people needing to feel passionate about something and in also needing to have a creative outlet. Mosaics seems to be the one for me which is just as well as I cannot knit and crochet or do the traditional women’s crafts. And while I can be creative in the kitchen, it doesn’t exactly last long enough! I get much more excited going to the local hardware store to investigate new glues and grout.


Superhero Mum, originally uploaded by GeoWombats.

And this is me in SuperMum mode wearing a slightly too large stinger suit because I also like to sail baby boats aka toppers. Official uniform for MozAddicts Wildlife Warriors maybe? 😉



Friday Roundup

No, I’m not talking about weedkiller 😛

For a blog that is not even a week old, our blog stats are pretty darn good. On our best day we had 261 views come in. From my experience with blogs it usually takes weeks to months to get that number. And we will get more over the next couple of weeks since I have been leaving the link for this site on flickr whenever I use a photo from there and I have mentioned this project on a few sites. Feel free to link to the website.

And we must be getting bigger as I deleted the first three spambot spam comments today. Our presence has been detected out there in the blogosphere LOL.

Sandy is busy writing up some fact pages on mesh and everything you could possible want to know for this project. I don’t know where she finds the time as she is an incredibly busy lady.

Remember if there is any info you want to see on this blog, any questions you want answered or if you just want to say hi….. leave a comment! I am happy to find pics or hassle whoever I need to hassle [sweetly] to get the appropriate answers.

There’s a Making a Mosaic FAQ category on the right which allows you pull up all the technical info really easily.

I’ve happily been posting Aussie wildlife pics for the Inspiration section. I’ve fallen in love with Bundy the rescued wombat and Dave, the bearded dragon. If you click on the photos you will be taken to the original photos where I encourage you all to leave some feedback for the original photographer. The photos out there are amazing.

Have a terrific weekend folks!


Camels from Oz

People don’t associate camels with typical Aussie wildlife but they are very much part of the Australian outback.

Loneliness of the Long Distance Camel, originally uploaded by aaardvaark.


During the last four decades of the 19th century and the first years of the 20th, Afghan cameleers formed the core of every major expedition into Australia’s central desert region and provided transport and communication links with sheep and cattle farms, mining projects and religious missions on the desert fringe. Their camels, which foraged on semi-desert plants and could go for days without water, were faster and cheaper than horse or bullock transport.



Australian camel, originally uploaded by WindeBabe.



2003.08.01, originally uploaded by natmeister.


As the demand for this transport increased, hundreds of Afghans travelled to Australia on three-year work contracts. Low wages—in the 1880s between £3 and £4 a month or about a quarter of the amount paid to bullock team drivers—ensured that most remained in Australia. Many married and established families. Afghan settlements, later known as Ghantowns, sprang up around shipping ports and outback railheads in South Australia, New South Wales, Queensland and Western Australia.



Tanami Track – Merciless, originally uploaded by Zwergie.


There are now significant populations of wild camels in various parts of Australia. Some are exported back to the Middle East as they are very healthy diverse stock and do well in the camel racing industry. Some end up as roadkill and others as camel burgers.



Camel – Australia, originally uploaded by Luca Zappa.