As the name indicates, this really is a crowded place. But more so for marine life. They are the heartbeat of this seaside community.
Let me quickly guide you around Crowdy Head.
A one loop road circles the headland all the way to the charming lighthouse. Cute!
This 3-kilometre sightseeing tour connects to the only road in or out. No one could get lost here.
Uptown has more prominent views over the ocean.
On sunny and calm days, the view is endless from the lighthouse particularly.
Whales are often seen from this high vantage point. What uptown residents invested in their homes, downtown people prefer to spend on fishing boats. It is a shorter way to the ‘hub’, this is where all the action is.
I named the ‘hub’ for the harbour, fishing is on everyone’s mind.
It is, in fact, the only direct financial income for locals here. There are no stores or petrol stations, no bakery and not even a fishing store. How good is that?
Fresh prawns can be bought straight of the boat early mornings.
But it’s not the human interactions I was interested in, more than the natural world. And there are plenty of takers.
A whole feathered army feeds on rich fish stocks.
The long-legged great white heron stalks the jetty strip, this is his territory. Fishermen sometimes throw a fishing bone, which he is happy to collect. If the pier appears too busy, his retreat was docked not far.
The colourful boat he chose to stand on, cast the heron’s shadow perfectly. Pretty cool.
A small egret prefers to forage around stony harbour walls. He stands motionless over the water and picks up unaware fish swimming by.
The feathered army is accompanied by the navy.
Heavy, black and white machinery patrols the waters for any fishy businesses.
Now and then, navy seals fly in.
Cormorants are the most agile sea birds underwater. They need to be. Chasing fish in their element is a skilful task. They fly in from other locations of the hub and land a few meters before their desired fishing ground.
Whilst paddling forward, they scan the waters for movements. It is usually the shiny reflection from a fish, that gives away their location.
One last look, and down he goes. How lucky was I with weather conditions today?
The plumage-platoon is completed with the airforce. Heavy artillery circles high above, ready to missile any given opportunity.
The gannet’s entertainment factor is more than spectacular. Their torpedo-like fishing style had me and other spectators captivated.
Watching them on close-range is just fascinating.
Simple reflections on calm waters gave it the ’wow’ factor. I collected so much material about thrill seeking gannets, which will be posted in another blog. Or two.
I was captivated by this fascinating sea bird.
Terns are generally timid birds and fly off rather quick. They don’t seem to care much around here.
This tern was relishing the calm and sunny conditions, only a few meters away from me.
I enjoyed a closer encounter on his shiny appearance.
This tern hangs loose with cheek on his beak. Priceless.
Terns often lineup with pelicans on the dry docks.
These posts are placed to separate the boat launch ramp into five individual ramps and reduces stressful times for hasty boaties.
A favourable and more useful resting station for small and big birds.
And the biggest bird is off course the pelican.
No matter how hard I try, I can’t resist photographing these nimble birds. There is always something different.
It’s fair to say, that these pelicans felt comfortable and safe on these posts.
I could zoom right into their eyes and explore an unseen view of a pelican. Quite extrovert.
A higher lamp post would be a preferred option for the pelican if these didn’t have an extension. These metal ’blockers’ were installed by the council to deter birds of the sea to rest high above.
What a constructive, unnatural idea. I guess, too many people got pooped on, which is annoying.
It clearly shows, how humankind is willing to share with Mother Nature.
Fortunately, this metal frame doesn’t expel all birds.
I have counted 5 different birds of prey in the blue skies above. The mighty fish eagle is by far the largest gliding raptor. Extremely shy, this one didn’t like the idea of close encounters. I can’t blame him!
Dolphins are never far from a fishy smorgasbord. They patrol the harbour walls every day at the change of tides. Sometimes, they are even seen within the hub.
Taking photos of playful dolphins from a shaky kayak is somewhat challenging, to say the least.
One just hopes to get that one lucky shot. And I did.
Gotta be happy with this frame.
Plenty of colourful birds circle the perimeter here as well.
Or, just hanging around. This little green parrot took my interest.
They are hard to spot within a leafy banksia tree, but oh so cute when detected.
Their squeaky scream shows you in what tree they are. It’s often the movements of the branches, that gives away their exact location. Just wow.
Usual suspects appeared in a different light just as well.
Well, if this hasn’t tickled your natural taste buds, there is always the sun.
Early sun rays are best observed from the break wall.
Wet boulders reflect sun rays in lustrous colour.
The low light makes this hub a peaceful environment.
But the sunsets are a fraction more stimulating.
‘South’ and ‘Middle Brother Mountains’ capture low clouds, which sun rays exploit stunningly.
On some occasion, fog already covered Crowdy Bay’s National Park.
The peaks appear as deserted island on the camera.
This huge bay up to Diamond Head reflects sunny impressions very well.
The sunsets from Diamond Head are just as breathtaking.
Even the harbour offers plenty of photo opportunity. Either towards Diamond Head?
Or just a familiar subject.
Quite amusing really, to think about how many times I went back and forth, just to get the right angle to the sun. Photography is hectic business sometimes, but oh so rewarding.
One has so many options for great photos, from all aspects. Just brilliant.