The Silvereye


I heard them long before I saw them.  They are noisy in the scrub that border the shores of Jurien Bay in the north to Esperance in the south east.  Curious I attempted to identify the source of the incessant tweet.  Once spotted, they were more difficult to photograph.  A sudden movement only signalled their departure.  Trying to get them in focus only to lose them again was frustrating.  They blend in beautifully with their surroundings and almost impossible to see.  Those of you who have tried to photograph tiny silvereye will know the patience and persistence needed to achieve the outcome.

The olive green silvereye found in the West is tiny.  As a species they are known to fly great distances yet weigh just 10 gm.  What they lack in weight, they make up in their uniqueness.  Their expressions are serious, almost comical.  Their feathers, coloration and claws are exquisite.  They have taught me to stop, look and listen while bush walking.  Beauty comes in smaller packages too amid the grandeur of landscape.

On a trip to Esperance earlier in the year, much to my surprise, I found one silvereye singing heartily in the open where the scrub had been destroyed by a bushfire.  Alone, the vulnerability of her exposure did not dampen her early morning spirit.  The song remained the same.

And, so it is with people too.  The song remains the same.

As always,

a dawn bird


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