The wonders of the natural world are my great obsession in life: From the plants and trees that make terrestrial life possible, to the fungi and soil organisms that support them; from the rarely seen jewels that are the amphibians, to their hard-edged and inscrutable cousins, the reptiles, and the uncountable profusion of invertebrate life. I can happily spend hours observing the curious aquatic lives of fish, or wait for nightfall for a glimpse of some elusive mammal as it emerges from it's day-time den. But above all else, it is the birds, with their mastery of flight, their astonishing colours, their expressiveness and their busy, quirky characters that bring me the most joy.
There are few activities I enjoy more than exploring natural places and discovering hidden gems that those who have not the eyes to see, nor the ears to hear would so often overlook: The tiny wildflowers, every bit as gaudy and intricate as their larger relatives, only in miniature; the tracks and signs that speak of yet greater diversity hidden from view; the songs of frogs and birds singing full-throated for none but themselves; and amongst it all, the presence or absence of humans, humblingly inconsequential.
To admire the beauty of the natural world, to consider the complex relationships between all it's inhabitants, and best of all, to share these experiences with other enthusiasts, these are the things that enervate me.
At times, when the mood strikes me, I sometimes attempt to celebrate my passions through the visual arts. I have tried my hand at Oils and Watercolours, but my preferred medium is Dry Pastels. Working from photographs, I like to draw birds mostly, though admittedly I've not picked up a pastel in quite some time due to the torrid love-affair I'm currently engaged in - Photography. Beginning initially as a way to obtain original source material for my drawings, it has of since taken over as my major outlet for capturing the beauty I find in the world.
I am an ardent reader. For entertainment, I will often turn to the escapism and imagination of Science Fiction and Fantasy, or to my growing collection of titles by Gerald Durrell. At other times it is edification I seek, and so I turn to non-fiction titles on a wide range of subjects including, but not limited to, Natural History, Botany and Biology as well as more practical tomes on gardening and aviculture or field guides for native plants, animals and birds. I'm also cultivating a budding interest in Guerilla Gardening.
I have a wicked sense of humor and love a good pun. This, it turns out, is an extraordinarily difficult thing to demonstrate in a self-summary, without coming across as incredibly try-hard. I take my hat off to those who have managed it.
For those who put stock in such things, according to the Long Scientific Personality Test, my personality type is ISTJ.