The Wing-Friends and Other Books

In Blogger's slideshows images are greatly reduced, so lose much of their impact. And captions added to them in Picasa Albums vanish, so the images shown above are: the Milky Way, the Orion Nebula, Earth, Earth with New Zealand circled, New Zealand, Auckland & the Hauraki Gulf, Waiheke Island, some native NZ forest, a Fantail and chicks, various doves, etc.

(If you want to see the first ten images in their original size, they are in a posting made on the 24th of November 2011.)

My book The Wing-Friends is an imaginative tale of a small brave boy, a magical adventure, a magnificent Pegasus and the wonderful Kingdom of the Pegasi. It has been given very good reviews, and virtually every reader on Goodreads has so far awarded it five stars. It is available here. Some of my other writings are available as e-books, such as The Lower Deck, which is an over-the-top take on Waiheke happenings--sort of.

Wednesday, 30 November 2011


On Monday (the 28th) two more chicks appeared. Chicks are easy to tell from adults, because apart from being smaller than most adults, their ceres are pink ('ceres', pronounced 'sears', are the small bulges doves have either side of the tops of their beaks). On adults they become a pinkish white. And chicks still have discoloured and incomplete feathers down their fronts, where the pigeon-milk they are fed on at first has dribbled down.

Both chicks are easy to tell from the other twelve birds because they are have distinctive features. One has feathers on its feet even longer and thicker that BigFeet's, so it promptly became BigFeet2. The other has a black smudge at the top of its tail, so became Smudge. Both were rather hesitant about me at first, far more than the first three chicks were.

The amazing thing about BigFeet2 is how fast it learnt.On Tuesday it tried pecking up little bits of food and could not do it at all. But on Wednesday it succeeded straight away. Obviously all it needed was to sleep on it.

Later in the day it fed from my hand, after being too nervous to come close the day before.

So now I must have a total of fourteen small white neighbours. But by this evening (Thursday) the most that had come at one time was eleven. It may be that this part of the forest is getting a bit crowded and some have moved away, but I think it more likely that some adults are sitting on nests, and that I can expect even more chicks to arrive.

I was given a kind of message that more chicks were coming, because last Saturday I found half a dove's egg by the front porch, which must have been deposited there by a parent. Obviously an egg-mail: 'Expect chicks.'

The egg is about 3cm in diameter and must have been about 6cm long. Pure white, with a semi-gloss surface. An egg as beautiful as the bird that laid it.

Other doves have copied BigFeet and landed on my head a few times, but it is the one that does it most often.