Butterflies, Brown Snakes and Wedge-Tailed Eagles

One thing is for sure. Each time I venture out by myself around The Sables, it’s not unlikely that I’m going to have a random animal siting. Why I don’t strap a Go Pro camera to my head when I set out on an adventure, I don’t know.

Two weekends ago, I set off from the cabin in the car to pick up something from town. Since you asked, I was going to get a connection for an Anderson plug so I could re-wire the pump to the solar system. Honestly, sometimes I like to think of myself as a well-rounded electrician more than anything else. So off I went in the car, with Lady snoozing happily in the back.

Lady doing some sleeping in the back of the car

Lady having a nap in the back of the car

Driving down the dirt track back to the main gate I ran over a brown snake that was lying across the middle of the road. Realising at the last second it was a snake and not a stick, I had a moment of panic as I drove over it and checked quickly in the rear view mirror to see if I had killed it. Nope. No sign of it.. I drove back to see if it had crawled away, and there was nothing. Nada. Not sure if it’s just me, or if everyone remembers the stories about how snakes can get caught up in the wheel then make their way through the undercarriage of the car and appear in the interior and bite the person who thought they’d run over it. If you can, then you can understand my distress.

Driving on with one big toe reluctantly pushing the accelerator and the other foot tucked safely underneath me, I turned out of our gate and made my way onto the dirt road toward town. Little did I know, but at this exact point I turned right behind the flight path of a wedge-tailed eagle. A little too concerned about what was happening at my feet, just waiting to see that snake appear, I looked up to see this enormous eagle right in front of the windscreen. This thing was so big that its wingspan took up the whole windscreen and then some. Taking me a good 5 seconds to realise what the hell that thing was and what was going on, the glorious bird glided in front of the car for a good 100m before veering off to the side. In a slightly more dramatic retelling of the tale later that day, I added that it looked over it’s shoulder and looked me in the eye, but I can’t verify if that is fact or imagination at this point. I finally pulled over and got the camera out, but it was too late to capture the moment. Hence, the GoPro plan for next weekend.

Not me, obviously... But this photo aims to give a bit of scale. Thank you Perth Now for the photo.

Not me, obviously… But this photo aims to give a bit of scale. Thank you Perth Now for the photo.

If I was honest, I’d say I was a little on edge by the time I got to town. For that reason, I decided to ask one of the men at Mitre 10 to look under the car to check for a brown snake. To his credit, this man got on his stomach and crawled right under the car and did a bloody above-the-call-of-duty type look. Meanwhile, I hopped nervously around the car pretending to help, wondering how I’d live with myself when this guy died from a snake bite to the face. Because there is not a lot of space under that Honda, and god knows how he could have got his arms out to protect his face in that scenario.

Recounting this story to Matt later in the day was met with what I can only describe as absolute mortification. Apparently it’s not very cool to ask someone else to look for the brown snake that is probably not under your car. Live and learn. While Matt’s street cred at Mitre 10 might be totally blown, all I can say is, the trip back to the farm that day was a lot better than the one out of there.

In more animal news, I’m very happy to report that the caterpillars have since changed to a glorious array of butterflies. Iridescent blue and black, mottled brown, buttercup yellow and white butterflies are floating and zigzagging in their lovely haphazard way all across the farm. It is an absolute joy to sit back on the deck and watch them pass by.

No butterflies here, but a nice view from the cabin taken last weekend.

No butterflies here, but a nice view from the cabin taken last weekend.