Nature's Place

For the Life of Me …

P2220462 - Mark Berkery

P2220476 - Mark Berkery

P2220485 - Mark Berkery

P2220492 - Mark Berkery

We’ve had some rain recently and no shortage of sunshine, but today was a remarkable day for the creatures of the garden. The first visitor was a bronze lizard, about 4” long, which came into view as I was sitting at the computer, zipping along the floor. The second was a Snowy Egret, a tall slim elegant bird that landed in the garden looking for a meal, keeping an eye on me as it strutted around.

The third was a Blue Banded Bee that, while I was watering some plants, came and hovered in the spray from the hose – made me smile that. And the fourth was a Water Dragon that appeared from beneath a pile of broken branches from a tree and sat there while I sprayed it, elevating its rear body while dropping its head to catch the water that flowed down towards its mouth.

They all have two things in common. They appeared in (my perception) the house or garden and I didn’t get a picture of any of them – this time. I let the little lizard wander about the house, no point in trying to catch it – probably do it damage. When the Dragon had enough it climbed into the pile below the trees and disappeared, for now.

The bee, along with all its flying kind, buzzes around the garden supping from the many flowers and when I went to look where the Egret was investigating I found what I had thought might be the case. Death, what else …

The leopard beetle I saw tucking into the flowers heart yesterday was gone. I found a piece of its carapace on one of the sunflowers broad leaves. No doubt the Egret will be back, along with the rest.

It’s a pleasure watching the garden grow, the life that comes and goes.

Mark Berkery … CLICK any picture to enlarge in a new tab, they do look better bigger – FireFox – for me

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35 Responses

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  1. paranoiasnfm said, on 03/01/2014 at 1:33 am

    Beautiful! :)

  2. naturechaplain said, on 15/12/2013 at 9:06 am

    I very much like the macro/micro view you are taking of LIFE.

  3. Jamiun Micheal said, on 11/12/2013 at 5:31 pm

    wonderful mark.. congratulation

  4. afrenchgarden said, on 07/12/2013 at 5:35 pm

    We’re in winter here and it was good to hear about summer in your garden and the creatures that visit.

    • Mark said, on 08/12/2013 at 11:20 am

      Thanks AFG. As another comment said, you have some winter flowers coming, snowflakes …

  5. SuzySomething said, on 07/12/2013 at 11:47 am

    Wonder-ful photos, Mark. As always, I’m in awe of your photographic skills. Such detail…it feels as if I am right there to stick my nose into the little creatures’ busy-ness…probably get it stung or bitten, but it’ d be worth it, I think. I thoroughly enjoy your philosophy and reverence for the life in your garden…and the bounties of our planet (which,sadly, we are in the process of destroying,) Even parasites understand that if they kill their host, they will also die.

    • Mark said, on 07/12/2013 at 1:28 pm

      Hello Sara. You have to be careful sticking your nose in anywhere, especially flowers that often have a wily spider lurking in it somewhere, as this one did. I only discovered it as I took the stem to hold it steady. Flower spiders are not usually biters, though if one got up your nose you could crack your head on something as you fell backwards in an effort to get away from ‘that thing that went up my nose’!

      Yes, it seems we are the only thing out of order on the planet, and causing everything else to seem so too. But there must be purpose or what’s the point …

      • SuzySomething said, on 08/12/2013 at 7:04 am

        Yes, I’d definitely react just as you’ve suggested. Spiders scare me…the little ones aren’t so bad, but when they are practically as big as I am, my reaction is proportionate. I have one about as big as a silver dollar who lives under a cabinet in my living room. :o) Last night he scuttled (too big to scurry) out from under a basket I had left on the floor. I was so surprised that I *did* nearly fall backwards trying to get away from him. Now, I’m afraid he will decide to scuttle into my bedroom and jump out of the closet (monsters live in closets…) when I least expect it. I don’t kill spiders and usually let them scuttle and hide. But when they are nearly as big as I am, hysteria rules. (But, your Honor, it was either him or me. I *had* to kill him. It was self-defense…) So, if he stays out of my way and I don’t see him, he’s not in any danger…buuut, if if he startles me again I *will* attack. (…the suspect was armed with a fly-swatter) Picture me swatting frantically, chasing the harmless victim as he desperately tries to find a place to hide. In an effort to play fair, I give him fair warning and give him plenty of time to find suitable shelter–picture me making a lot of noise, stomping my feet, clapping my hands (and looking like an idiot) as I approach the site of my last sighting. My ridiculous arachnophobia turns me into a murderer and I always feel guilty when I kill one…our Native American people reverently apologize and offer thanks to the Spirit when they kill an animal, and that’s what I do, too.

        Signed….Yours Truly, Utterly Ludicrous Little Old Lady

        • Mark said, on 08/12/2013 at 11:29 am

          :) The spider is there to help you through your fear. That’s how life works. But everybody in their place, and one day s/he won’t return from hunting. Then your fear will look for something else to ‘be’ on, until you see fear needs no object and you can start giving it up altogether …

          • SuzySomething said, on 08/12/2013 at 12:31 pm

            Sooner rather than later…one hopes.

            • Mark said, on 08/12/2013 at 12:57 pm

              Time and experience – you can speed up the process by getting down there and facing it, looking through to the ‘other’ side, which from this ‘side’ is nothing to speak of. Grounding in the simple sensation inside also works – The Kill :)

            • SuzySomething said, on 10/12/2013 at 12:44 pm

              Mark, it’s funny that the “food” in The Kill was a gecko. We lived on Guam in the late 60s and geckos were everywhere. Guamanians consider it lucky to have geckos in their homes so they have the run of the island. We had many in our own home and enjoyed their chuk chuk chuk…and their prolific mating habits…except when getting up in the night and using the bathroom and having on drop from the ceiling on your lap! I had one in the kitchen who lived underneath the toaster. Some mornings I’d find it stuck in the sink (stainless steel and apparently too slippery to climb out, even for the gecko) I’d put a kitchen utensil like a wooden spoon propped up the side and go do other things for several minutes…when I’d come back the gecko would be gone, until the next time.

            • Mark said, on 10/12/2013 at 1:31 pm

              The Geckos are everywhere here too, and they attract the predators. Huntsman spiders can grow ‘big’ and they are impressive hunters – as the name implies. Here’s a few more Huntsman posts – Mother, mother …Mother and Children … – and another big mother

  6. Tammie said, on 07/12/2013 at 8:54 am

    How wonderful the way you interact with your garden friends

    I have something in common with this beetle, when i see flowers i also put my nose into it ;-) For now and many months, are flowers are in the form of snowflakes…..winter’s flowers.

    • Mark said, on 07/12/2013 at 11:43 am

      It’s a wonderful nature. That’s true, winter’s flowers …

  7. gretelau2001 (Lissa) said, on 07/12/2013 at 5:17 am

    The cycle of life :) Very grounding to see it going on around us while we humans struggle with the daily run around with work and what-not.

    • Mark said, on 07/12/2013 at 11:41 am

      Yes, nature has no problem but Mankind and yet we are the pinnacle of the evolution of intelligence. We just haven’t yet realised the value (yet) of returning, with the benefit of the experience of what doesn’t work for the good, to our own instinctual nature.

  8. Lyle Krahn said, on 07/12/2013 at 2:56 am

    Nice to have good company.

    • Mark said, on 07/12/2013 at 11:38 am

      Indeed, no psychological/emotional problems … :) Birds of a feather …

  9. Audrey said, on 06/12/2013 at 5:20 pm

    Enchanting, as always. Thank you, Mark. Your garden must be beautiful.

    • Mark said, on 07/12/2013 at 2:18 am

      Thanks Audrey. Yes, it is, to all creatures …

  10. treesshrubs said, on 06/12/2013 at 5:15 pm

    Gardens can be immensely satisfying and nurturing places and your house and garden sound fantastic! As are the images you share : ) Thankyou Trees

    • Mark said, on 07/12/2013 at 2:19 am

      Thanks Trees. Nature is a place where mind doesn’t readily go, usually. So it can be a place of renewal, of a simple good …

  11. paulettemotzko said, on 06/12/2013 at 4:22 pm

    Dazzling photos Mark. What kind of camera did you take them with?

    • Mark said, on 06/12/2013 at 5:09 pm

      Thanks Paulette. I use an old FZ50 + achromats, etc. It’s mostly here – http://beingmark.com/macro-illustrated/

      • paulettemotzko said, on 06/12/2013 at 10:14 pm

        Good Morning Mark,

        I am not familiar with the type of setting you spoke of but Pentax is a great camera.

        How long have you been shooting photos?

        Your photos are truly great.

        Paulette Motzko

        • Mark said, on 07/12/2013 at 2:22 am

          Morning Paulette. About 6 years with a camera, only macro. Practise makes …

  12. Jake said, on 06/12/2013 at 4:11 pm

    I love hearing the blue banded bees buzzing inside the eggplant flowers, tickles the ears and brings a smile to my face!

    • Mark said, on 06/12/2013 at 5:08 pm

      I’ve never seen Eggplant flowers but assume it is big enough for a BBB to enter and the sound is probably trumpeted out the bell shape.

      • Jake said, on 06/12/2013 at 6:14 pm

        Yeah little bee trumpets! I’ll never look at those flowers the same again haha, thanks!

  13. kerlund74 said, on 06/12/2013 at 4:09 pm

    Fantastic photos!


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