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Saturday, 13 October

07:00

A frenzied mobbing Natural Newstead

A couple of days ago, I heard a remarkable racket of small bird song emanating from a Long-leafed Box tree Eucalyptus goniocalyx in our back yard. It took me a while to see what the object of the fury of at least 10 different species of small birds was. Tucked between two branches, crouched and looking very disconsolate was a Southern Boobook. Buff-rumped, Striated, Brown and Yellow Thornbills, Scarlet Robins, Grey Fantails, Silvereyes, Striated Pardalotes, Yellow-faced and Brown-headed Honeyeaters were all going hell-for leather at it.

Southern Boobook (Ninox boobook)

A rather grumpy looking Boobook owl

I got quite concerned that the mobbers might exhaust themselves in this process and overlook the nests they were protecting as the owl was going nowhere in the daylight. But after about twenty minutes, in unison, they took a break for a couple of hours, only to return a couple of times in the day for a few more goes at the hapless owl who just wanted some kip.

I couldnt manage any photos of the birds as they were mobbing, but they all dropped in for a drink at the bird bath and I managed a few pics then.

Buff-rumped Thornbill (Acanthiza reguloides)

Buff-rumped Thornbill Acanthiza reguloides

I dont know if it was the presence of the owl or just that its the height of breeding at the moment, but the level of aggression between species as well as within was unusually high in this bird bath melee. A pair of Grey Fantails seemed to be the most obstreperous of all.

Grey Fantail (Rhipidura albiscapa)

Grey Fantail Rhipidura albiscapa

Silvereye (Zosterops lateralis)

Silvereye Zosterops lateralis

...

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Friday, 12 October

20:31

Dont forget the birds in the garden

A quick reminder about Sunday morning with the birds. Theres lots on everywhere, and not just for the birds, now we are well into Spring. Take some time out at the garden though, with the birds. Plus Geoff Park to help us hear and see them. And find out how we can attract more of Continue reading Dont forget the birds

17:28

A Stitch in time Edgar's Mission Farm SanctuaryEdgar's Mission Farm Sanctuary

Edgars Mission - Arabesque, jacket, jumper, kittens, lamb, Mixed, stitch

Saves more than nine! No celebration of Vet nurse Day would be complete without a stop to check in on our own Vet Nurse Stitch, another of our beloved animal residents who can always be found taking time out to cuddle up and provide comfort to those recuperating in our hospital ward. Having been rescued herself at only days old after a mammoth search and recovery effort in an industrial warehouse, Vet Nurse Stitch as she is affectionately known, has well and truly taken to her self-appointed role as chief comforter and carer of all those in need. (Second in command of course to Vet Nurse Ruby!)

Edgars Mission - cat, lamb, Lambie Baa Baa, Mixed, stitch

Born into the world with eyelid agenisis, likely caused by their stray mother Ohana suffering a vitamin deficiency, Stitch and her siblings have undergone numerous procedures to ensure their condition does not plague them into the future. Stitch recently underwent a follow up examination with the experts at Animal Eye Care, Malvern to address a recent change in her condition, resulting in a slight alteration to her daily care regimin but otherwise coming away with a clean bill of health.

Perhaps it is the fact that dear Stitch too is no stranger to the experience of veterinary waiting rooms and examinations that has seen her unique compassion come to the fore whenever another animal in need enters our care. Or perhaps it is the mere fact that animals do not experience those same barriers we so often do when presented with opportunities to express empathy. Whatever the cause, Stitch has certainly found her place in the world and in so many hearts here at Edgars Mission.

...

12:25

The Rescuers Edgar's Mission Farm SanctuaryEdgar's Mission Farm Sanctuary

Edgars Mission -_-79

We were honoured to be included in a panel as part of the Melbourne Writers Festival last month alongside a number of champions of the animal activist community. Moderated by none other than Osher Gnsberg, Pam Ahern, Laurie Levy, Debra Tranter and Ward Young openly and honestly discussed the emotional cost of lives spent saving animals with the take away message ringing true, Keep rescuing animals. You may lose your mind, but you will surely find your soul.

A huge thank you to Melbourne Writers Festival and all involved for the opportunity to be a part of such an important event on behalf of our animal friends.

Edgars Mission -_-80 Edgars Mission -_-81

12:10

Brooklyn-nine-nine Edgar's Mission Farm SanctuaryEdgar's Mission Farm Sanctuary

Edgars Mission - Brooklyn, Goat

It was no laughing matter for a young goat who discovered his days of wandering at large in an inner Melbourne industrial area were numbered. With a developer having purchased the land on which the now-named Brooklyn had called home, they were surprised to hear the words, You bought the land, the goat is yours, down the phone line.

And whilst moments like this could well cause our spirits to sink and have us shaking our fist at humankind as a whole, so often these are the very same moments in which we witness the full capacity of the human heart. With the land no longer suitable for Brooklyn to call home (in fact his featherweight condition, proximity to major roads and lack of any companions suggest this was never a suitable life for a goat) the developers options were severely limited and the advice was to have the timid and flighty Brooklyn, who nobody could get within metres of, shot.And the land developers easily could have done so and given not a second thought as they carried on with their large scale project. Except for the gnawing feeling in their hearts telling them perhaps there was a better way. And so, it was not a call to end Brooklyns life the developers made but one to save him and with the help of Manfred of Five Freedoms Animal Rescue, Brooklyn was safely sedated with a tranquilliser dart and transported to our sanctuary.

Now slowly learning the language of kindness, in time Brooklyn will join one of our goat herds where we trust he will form bonds and have the chance to live life as a goat should. And to the land developers who insisted there must be a better, kinder option for Brooklyn, despite the inconvenience it no doubt caused, hearts like yours truly give us hope that a better, kinder future is possible.

12:05

O Captain! My Captain! Edgar's Mission Farm SanctuaryEdgar's Mission Farm Sanctuary

Edgars Mission - captain luxmore, rooster

Those who know and love roosters will know them to be almost poetic in their existence with their passion for life, exuberant vocalisations and ability for grace and eloquence in movement.

However, sadly it is not a love story that is written for so many roosters who find themselves unwanted and abandoned simply for having been born male. It is more than an unfortunate consequence of the rise in popularity of the backyard hen that around 50% of birds hatched out will be male. With the poetic vocalisation of roosters not welcomed in suburban areas by some, sadly this leaves so many with nowhere to call home and sanctuaries such as ours can only safely accommodate so many. As unsuspecting chicken carers buy sexed day old chicks, we receive calls time and again for guaranteed female chicks who grow up to crow and have nowhere to turn.

Edgars Mission - captain luxmore, rooster-4

Having made his way to an outer suburbs pound we can only imagine the circumstances that had brought the handsome Captain Luxmore to us. With an adoptive home already secured, we were fortunately able to say yes when the, Can you take this rooster? call was received. Unfortunately, this was just one of six calls received on that day alone.

Perhaps only when we refuse to see chickens as mere egg laying machines or educational apparatus to teach children about life cycles will we begin to appreciate them for the poetry and masters of the Now they truly are. Perhaps then we may offer them a kinder existence than our society currently affords them.

Perhaps only then, O Captain! My Captain! The ship will be anchord safe and sound, its voyage closed and done.

...

11:56

A reason to be kind Edgar's Mission Farm SanctuaryEdgar's Mission Farm Sanctuary

Edgars Mission - Dexie, lamb, Lexie, mother, Sheep-2

His almost-smiling fuzzy face may well be enough to touch even the toughest of hearts but little Lexie lamb almost never was. Whilst it is incredibly tempting to stay in this moment forever, drinking in the mesmerising features of our darling new arrival, Lexies story begins some months ago in a far darker place, in a place where kindness is not the order of the day, a place from which sheep rarely return

Edgars Mission - Dexie, lamb, Lexie, mother, Sheep

She runs for her life, the smell of fear palpable in the air around her and as her eyes adjust to the dimmed light, it would probably be far kinder for her if this place stayed forever in muted darkness. For the things she sees now will surely be impossible to ever unsee. She has no name but in time, she will be known as Dexie, a young crossbred ewe whose time on this earth is up. Dexies life journey has brought her to an abattoir where her story is meant to end. But Dexie has other ideas

And she runs! Oh she runs! She jumps the bars meant to constrain and destine her to her end and Dexie runs for her life. For her life and for the freedom she holds so dear.

...

11:15

Dandelion Edgar's Mission Farm SanctuaryEdgar's Mission Farm Sanctuary

Edgars Mission - chicken, Dandelion, Pam

Dont be fooled by the delicate-sounding name, our latest arrival Dandelion is as brave as they come. Having found herself in the wrong place at the right time this dear girl has suffered a terrible injury to her wing at the hands (or, more accurately, the mouth) of a too-curious canine. Luckily for Dandelion, a kind heart intervened in the nick of time and she arrived at our sanctuary, where she was quickly stabilised in our hospital. Dandelion has since undergone further veterinary assessment and is showing positive signs that a full recovery of her injured wing is possible.

Edgars Mission - chicken, Dandelion-3

In bringing animals like dear Dandelion into our care, we are reminded of their unique personalities and determination to survive despite the odds stacked against them. Already Dandelions true nature is beginning to shine through as she in no uncertain terms tells us what does and doesnt please her in life. Yet at the same time we are also made acutely aware of the vulnerability of her kind and how they are at the mercy of the choices and decisions we each make in our lives. It goes without saying that we are incredibly grateful to the kind heart who saw Dandelion as someone worthy of saving and who made the decision to step in and save a life instead of merely walking on by. It is this kindness we truly believe is inherent in all of us and it is only a matter of time before it blossoms into life.

...

07:00

Sandpipers on the wing Natural Newstead

Its lots of fun photographing migratory waders in flight.

This flock of Sharp-tailed Sandpipers, with a single Curlew Sandpiper put on a great display last weekend. How they manage to wheel and turn, without colliding and in perfect harmony, is a mystery to me!

Sharp-tailed Sandpipers, Cairn Curran, 6th October 2018

Thursday, 11 October

15:43

MAINfm Music Trivia at the Taproom 94.9 Main FM

MAINfm Trivia hosted by the Record Low Show

MAINfm Trivia at the Taproom is back! This month The Record Low show will be hosting and asking all thing music related.

Get a crew together (no more than 6!) and get ready to have your brains quizzed out!

7pm start, $10 to play, $5 for MAINfm subscribers. Theres a $50 bar tab, a Record Low voucher and cheeky drink prizes to be won.

The Tappy will have the beer flowing, pizza oven blazing and all ticket and raffle sales go straight to the best little station in the nation.

13:09

Do not go Edgar's Mission Farm SanctuaryEdgar's Mission Farm Sanctuary

Do not go where the path may lead; go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.

Pam-and-Schofield

My trail began on the 14th of December 1961, born the second child to two damn fine human beings: Sylvia Pamela Brown and Bernard James Ahern. Wandering down many paths throughout the years, it was the discovery of an old journal recently that took me back to a path I inadvertently took in early February of 1994. A short cut led to a detour, which was to lead me to a German Shepherd dog and a change in the course of both of our lives. Out of the corner of my eye I spied what I thought was a dead dog by the side of the road. I thought that our shared moment together would be but that moment of sadness I felt for his passing. But then I thought he moved. Did he move? No, he didnt. Hang on, I think he did. Teetering between arriving at work on time (as my short cut had already proved anything but) and the plight of the hapless injured animal, it was the hapless injured animal who easily won out.

What transpired next was a new path to navigate for both me and the gentle German Shepherd, as Schofield was to become to the Central Highlands Animal Shelter what Edgar Alan Pig was to Edgars Mission. Whilst tugging at the piece of fencing wire that crudely connected the emaciated dog via his neck to a fence post, his pitiful form and putrid wounds tugged at my heart strings like no other. His dew claws, or what was left of them from pawing at the wire in an attempt to free himself, were a mix of dried blood and pus and a great host for infection which had achieved its debilitating aim. The ashes of this once majestic animal drove me to ask, What happens to animals such as he?. The answer was the impetus for creating the aforementioned charity. Shooting unclaimed animals and dumping them at the local tip was never going to sit well with me.

Schofield was to become my most constant and loyal of companions and nurtured my great love of his breed. I found him to be curious, obedient, loveable, ever alert and vigilant, courageous and brave (I swear he would have laid down his life for me if ever the need arose, and yes, I truly believe I would have done the same for him), intelligentall traits so typical of these majestic dogs. But sadly, as the years rolled on, so too did his hip dysplasia, a chronic and debilitating condition all too common for German Sheph...

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