Monday, September 6, 2010

Giant Rabbits, Spiders and Shark Attacks

Last week while staying in the country, I saw an enormous rabbit on the front lawn. I thought it was some kind of deformed wallaby at first. It had the hind quarters of a small kangaroo and was bigger than some dogs. It was probably a hare but I am just impressed to see bunny ears on something that big.
I rushed straight for my camera, but sadly all I got through the window was a few blurry shots and one good shot of those enormous back legs. There was no way it was going to hang around while I went outside and set up a better angle.

I have only ever seen one hare and I didn’t know they grew that big. I get all excited when I see something I have never seen before. I have so many wonderful photos of Australian wildlife and I love it when they come right up close like that. When I came to Australia, I thought I would see many more koalas, snakes and kangaroos than I have. Those I have seen have mostly been in wildlife parks, except for the spiders. I saw some beauties in Maleny; big black furry looking things that could really move, especially with a broom chasing them.

But Australia also has some other animals I am glad I haven’t been close to.

Two weeks ago a family found a nest of pythons in their roof. One of them was 5 metres long and as I watched the men take it out of the roof it seemed very powerful. Pythons kill by constriction and I wondered how long the snakes would have waited before going into the house. There can’t be much food for a python in the roof space of a house and at some stage they would have gone looking for food. Perhaps a head peeking out of the covers would look small enough to attack.

On the same day, a surfer was killed by a shark attack. It seems there were seals in the area and the shark most likely thought his leg was a seal. Shark attacks are rare and I have heard that more people die from eating sharks than from shark attacks, but I am still nervous of sharks.

Guess who wants to go swimming with the sharks?

Phil has been planning a shark dive for months and things keep getting in the way. First it was cancelled by bad weather and then he was unavailable. But he will be diving with them one day. And you know what? I don’t really mind. He will be diving with nurse sharks and they are a different creature from the man eating kind. If I can get the scuba diving thing sorted then I will be doing it myself. I just love to see wildlife up close. And it doesn’t get much closer than that.

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