After a couple of scorchers (40+) I organised an afternoon off home duties for today, with a brief shower in the morning and cooler temps had me hoping that the local critters would be out and about. This was more a scouting mission, just spending time out in the bush while checking over some ground for goats, while keeping an eye out for deer or possible fox opportunities. The plan was to circle out up along a creek, check out a huge nest that I can only think is a wedgie nest, cross the ridge and return to the car. The strong swirling wind made it difficult to track upwind constantly, but I was able to get within bowshot of 3 mobs of roos before they busted me, so I couldn't be doing too badly. I don't know if it was the recent rain/cool that brought the spiders out, but there were everywhere - from tiny little yellow and black spiky ones that I've never seen before, to the standard long stick like ones, to the big orb spiders. Good think I like spiders cos I ended up with a few climbing over me while tracking through the bush.
Have never seen these little guys before.
Reaching the top of the ridge, I stopped for a breather, a quick snack and drink and spotted a handful of goat pellets. A few more a hundred meters or so further on where the only other sign I saw, so despite my uncle shooting a young billy not too far from here, I'll head elsewhere for the time being.
Yeah, I know only a stinky sage but gotta start somewhere!
Returning to the car, I took advantage of the spare time to swing by and check on a fig tree that I knew the fruit would be close to ripening, and then onto a very small dam that has a couple of wallows and preach trees on the edge. The highest mark would be close to 7' from the ground, and when I first visited this spot in the winter, it was completely trashed with hoof prints everywhere. There were a number of preach trees in the area too, as well as rub trees both in use and old ones. This time round, there was only 1 preach tree definitely recently used, with another possible but not a single recent rub. The thistles looked like a mob had been through, but there were very few hoof prints in the soft edges, so I'm guessing it was mostly macropods of some description.
Circling the dam, I nearly ran into this big lady.
I've seen plenty of large golden orbs, but this would come close to being the biggest and would easily have stretched bigger than the palm of my hand.
Given the amount of prints and sign I saw in the winter, I was a little disappointed that there was so little this time - no rubs, bugger all prints and no droppings. Still, they'll be back this coming winter I'm sure and I should be ready to have a serious crack by then.