The Cats etc: u/d 13/12/1997

'Tana.

This is gentle little 'Tana (short for Sultana)

He fishes in the river and brings home water rats, large eels, family size fishes etc.

He enjoys his trips to the 'vet, but costs us a small fortune in fees. (November $166-)

Portrait of 'Tana.

A portrait of 'Tana.

Buddy.

Buddy is our daughter's cat. As she is teaching in Japan this year, Buddy lives with us.

Chloe is a Tortoiseshell cat, she is 'Tana's mother. She rarely appears except for food, so I have not yet managed a photo of her.

Chipchop, the fledgling."Chipchop."

This little fellow fell out of its nest and lost its tail feathers before we rescued it. (somebodies cats, I guess) It was christened "Chipchop" for the call that it made.

It lived in a budgie cage beside my bed for about 3 weeks and ate mostly dog roll. I took it for walks (on my shoulder) with a length of wool tied around its leg. Once it became brave enough, it would flutter off and nose dive, getting better at flying as its tail feathers regrew. These activities enhanced my reputation as the local "nutter". The local children called me "the Birdman" for about the next year.

The little bird happily accepted me as its surrogate father until it was just about ready to fly, and then one day it absolutely panicked as I came near to its cage. Once outside, it flew up and into a tree. After a few more moments, it flew over the fence and away. I sometimes wonder if the little fellow is one of the pair that nests in our front garden.

Puketerakei Seagull.Puketerakei seagull.

About 5 years ago, while on holiday, Michelle and Hazel the dog rescued this seagull which was swimming in circles in the surf. The following day, it was well recovered but was in no hurry to depart from its pampering host.

No, we don't run a rescue mission for lost and injured animals! These two just happened to be lucky.

Normally, no strange animal has the slightest chance around our property with a dog and three cats in residence. A very large, lost, fluffy brown and white rabbit wandered onto our section some weeks ago and survived long enough to be returned to its owner. That it was bigger than Tana, and rescued quickly by Dylan, may be the reason.


Dylan and Hazel.Dylan and Hazel as a sea monster with seaweed at Karitane rivermouth about 1991.