Walking around Barrm Birrm
Barrm Birrm is a lovely bit of bush, but there's a lot of bush around in the Macedon Ranges - what's so special about this particular bit?
1: If you live in Riddell, or nearby, like Gisborne or Sunbury, both 15 minutes drive away, it's easy to get to.
2: You walk in and you walk right out of your normal life.
Mark Busby, amateur birdo from Gisborne, on the right here, with local Landcare member Matt. Mark is sharing what he knows about brids, and Matt is absorbing that.
Sometimes, it's good to walk with like-minded people, who appreciate being out in the bush, and who are as curious as you. Take this morning, for instance.
Margaret Pittaway said she's been on bird trips with Mark, and asked him if he'd like to come and have a look in Barrm birrm, and run us through how to set up a regular bird walk. He said yes, and we went out walking, stopping, listening, looking.
Now we 're set up with a bird app (Cornell University's eBird), where Mark will put the 17 species we saw this morning. Margaret will get an account and we can add new birds as we find them.
What we learned as we walked this morning with Mark was how to listen. Birds announce themselves with their calls, and then the eye can look for that creature, the one for instance that makes that small piping sound, and perhaps find it, in amongst the tree trunks and canopy.
But to find it you have to really stop.
In that attentive pause, listening, looking out, the natural world is there for you, living out its life.
If care for the land starts with love for the natural world, as we have found in Landcare, then you plug right into that love walking in Barrm Birrm. Out of out urbanising, virtualising lives, into something different - the natural world.
You can do that solo anytime, but to do it with others, and to learn from and with them, you need someone who organises the event, picks the day, invites people to come, all of that stuff. In the case of walking with the birds, I hope that person will be Margaret. She's the first to say she's a total novice, but she's interested, and that's what matters.