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Better than a bluebird of happiness

What could be a rarer and even more cheering sight?

Red-eared firetail finch, near Torbay. Copyright Doug Spencer.
Red-eared firetail finch, near Torbay. Copyright Doug Spencer.


Meet Stagonopleura oculata (sometimes, Emblema oculata) – the red-eared firetail – a splendid, tiny finch which lives only in moister parts of Western Australia’s southwest.

Many people – even southwest WA residents – have never seen one.

However, it seems that this is not a “rare” or “threatened” species, contrary to what had been widely believed until a few years ago.

My beloved and I met this definitely-not-nervous individual just metres from the front door of where we are staying for several days, on well-wooded country a few kilometres away from West Cape Howe – WA’s southernmost point, midway between Denmark and Albany.

Available time and effective Internet connectivity are in short supply, so the next post will be at least eight days away.

Coming soon on Pelican Yoga: Spring flowers galore, and two wonderful things that very few people have seen…

1: virgin jarrah forest. (only a very tiny amount exists, and – as I will explain- that magnificent remnant is irreplaceable.  If you were to live for 400 years, you would not see any more “virgin jarrah” of such magnificence…and by then the magnificent remnant will have lost all of its current “King” trees)

2: the “secret place” where Tim Winton honeymooned.


Published in nature and travel photographs Western Australia

One Comment

  1. john obrien john obrien

    a splendid story Doug.

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