During our time away house sitting in Port Macquarie on the Mid-North Coast of NSW we had the privilege of seeing family and friends. We also saw many Koalas, one of Australia’s unique creatures known as marsupial mammals, though this is not altogether correct as they are uniquely Koala, having their own family : Phascolarctidae. While we were there we visited the Billabong Zoo where they have Koalas that are being bred and rehabilitated. Koala moms will often care for babies of other mothers who are not able to care for their own, in addition to their own babies (joeys) .

These furry little creatures live extensively on eucalypt leaves of specific species and very rarely if ever need to drink water, as they get all their nutrients from the leaves. This enables them to remain in the trees, when they are not moving about at night. Like many native Australian animals, excluding birds, they are nocturnal, sleeping in the day and feeding at night. Port Macquarie is the main Koala centre for NSW, having a Koala hospital, which is soon to be rebuilt and expanded, where injured and sick Kolas a treated and rehabilitated for release back into the wild. Many of the Koalas that suffered burns and distress from the horrific bush fires, where thousands were incinerated, were treated here. Here are some pics taken in the hospital. Koalas, as a result of the bushfires are now classified endangered and estimated to be extinct by 2050 if our state government does not actively protect their habitat, which is rapidly diminishing due to extensive land clearing, building development and timber cutting. Koalas are only native to the far eastern states of Australia, excluding Tasmania. They have also been introduced to Kangaroo Island to held prevent the spread of the Chlamydia virus which sends them blind, another one of the many dangers to Koalas, which include dogs, cars, tree felling, bushfires, diseases, most of which are caused by the current non indigenous human occupation.

Port Macquarie Koala Hospital

We had this Koala visit us one afternoon in the backyard of the house we were staying at:

Backyard Koala

We visited Sea Acres Rainforest Centre where my books are sold. The ferocious weather events experienced this year had damaged part of the walkway, and a few days after our visit there, another weather event closed the centre due to water damage to the building. Thankfully we did see the resident Powerful Owl, Australia’s largest owl, resting in a tree in the park. We were told its partner was nesting nearby. These birds are able to kill and carry possums (their main diet) and small animals such as cats and puppies, though this is not often reported.

Also in the rainforest this Eastern Yellow Robin is building its nest and doing a final seal with spiders web. Spring is in the air and many birds are pairing off and preparing to nest.

On top pf the rainforest canopy on a dead branch is the beautiful Dollarbird, which joins us each Summer to breed and then returns north in Autumn to escape the cold.

Also in the rainforest we sighted the Black-faced Monach, though it was a challenge to capture its image.

The male Australasian Figbird was also present, though we did not get a good look at the female. The pink eye-ring is descriptive of the male.

While we were at the Zoo we saw this beautiful example of the Little Eagle, Australia’s third eagle, which many never get to view, as it is not seen as often. Australia has only three eagle species, but many other raptor species. So I included it for those unfamiliar with it, as it is usually only seen in flight high in the sky, and as the name implies it is smaller than the other two.

This pair of Major Mitchell Cockatoo were also a beautiful sight at the zoo and I thought to include as they are usually only seen out west of the ranges.

The backyard of the house we were sitting had regular arrivals of local rainforest birds, which included the two species of bowerbird. The male and female Regent Bowerbird and the female Satin Bowerbird. Sadly the male was too elusive, as usual, to capture, though you will gain a good view of him in my books. Bowerbirds are essentially native fruit eaters, and like the Figbird, mainly feed on ripe figs from one of over 100 species which fruit at different times of the year.

A bird that makes itself a pest in home gardens around rainforest areas, as it did while we were house sitting is the Australian Brush Turkey. This female was being a menace around the house.

Finally I caught this pair of nesting Galah, checking their nest and guarding it.

Have a wonderful week. We are now back home again and getting adjusted to home life again, exploring our local national park, which we will share next post.


Rainforests are very important in maintaining the coastal weather and environment for humans, native birds and animals along the lush east coast of Australia. They have also provided timber for humans over the last 200 years. Sadly they are being depleted and cleared by thousands of acres a year. Rainforests are also a source of refreshment and reflection for those who take time to walk through them.

They offer opportunities for times of mindful relaxation, lowering one’s blood pressure, stress levels and depression by restoring peace and tranquility to the mind and soul. It heightens the senses to appreciate the beautiful creation and hopefully take the time to connect with the Amazing and Wonderful Creator, who lovingly gave us these places to enjoy along with him.The benefits of walking in a treed forest has been researched and now documented as true, and healthy, aiding longevity. My wife and I enjoy our regular rainforest walks, and how they continue to restore normality and balance to our lives even after having rested from our previous very stressful working lives. Even if you live in an area where rainforests do not exist, a walk on a beach, in a field, in a desert, in a nature park or along a river or bay are all opportunities to relax and refresh and renew our inner person, so take the opportunity at least once a week, on weekend with family, or alone and getoutn’about ! Much of the future mental, emotional and physical disorders are currently forming in our youth due to the sedentary stay inside computer and social media lifestyles that have been generated via our so called recent technological advances. My book Flight of a Fledgling may be helpful. Birdbooks

“I said, “Oh, that I had the wings of a dove! I would fly away and be at rest.” – Psalm 55:6

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To introduce people to our amazing Australian Birds

To learn from them better ways of living a healthy happy life

Adv. Dip. of Counselling and Family Therapy

© W. A. Hewson 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022

10 Comments »

  1. How nice that you are traveling again, it certainly, gave you a chance to include the Koalas; and numerous other species of birds, I would think that your government would take care of your most known specie as the Koala by children and adults. It’s an outrage. Thank you, Ashely. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks HJ, yes it is an outrage that they would finally agree to preserve forest after much petitioning by the public and then back flip thinking that no one is paying attention. This is classic of the very poor conservation record of this government. Everyone here is aware how much we lost from the fires and how numbers were decimated, even they are aware, but money speaks louder.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Sandra, yes it is, and the vegetation is so cooling and relaxing on a hot summers day. The sounds of birds and the wind in the tall trees is beautiful with many ferns and vines and fruiting trees. Love it ! 🙂

      Like

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