For over 100 years, water has travelled more than 100 kilometres from Lake Eildon through rivers, reservoirs and channels under gravity to our farm. We built our dam ten years ago to hold the water needed to irrigate the orchard.

Our dam has attracted many birds: ducks, swans, coots, spoonbills and garnets. The pelican is most engaging. Lumbering low over the orchard in pairs they circle the dam before plunging into the muddy water. They circle the dam in the shallows like an iceberg ushering and cornering their prey.  Do they really swallow whole carp live?

My favourites are the pesky blue wrens and the chatty willy-wagtails that congregate in the hedges near the house. We watch them from the kitchen as they come to the backdoor, chirping and squeaking. Here, a bird-cage is bric-a-brac.


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