moonvoice: (calm - moon-flower)
[personal profile] moonvoice
I've been sitting on a batch of Australian totems for a while now.
The majority are Endangered or Critically Endangered,
including these guys.
I will be releasing them in batches over the next
couple of weeks. :)
These are all sold, but if you're interested in commissions check out the commish information.

Carnaby's Black Cockatoo as Totem
Prints available here

MEANINGS – Rain Bird

Rain bird, rain magic, following the rain and preferring times of high rainfall, being able to move easily through many different types of environment, adaptability, preferring the company of those with like mind, crying and calling out your song, crying with joy and emotional freedom, travel, needing to be constantly on the move, needing a familiar home to return to, preserving what you care for, spirit, competition, a close relationship to trees, fun and enjoyment, a connection to Australian bushland and woodlands as well as their wights.


The short-billed black cockatoo (Carnaby’s black cockatoo, Carnaby’s cockatoo, large black cockatoo, mallee cockatoo, white-tailed cockatoo) is endemic to south-western Australia. They are black, having white/yellowish tail feathers and cheek patches. The male has a pink-red eye ring. They have distinctive short, broad, powerful beaks. They are large parrots, being 53-58 centimetres in length and a wingspan of more than a metre. They are quite similar in appearance to the Baudin’s black cockatoo. They feed on the seeds of proteaceaous plants (banksia, hakea, grevillea) as well as eucalyptus seeds and sheoaks. They generally take food from about 50 or more plants. They will also take wood-boring grubs. They can adapt and take food from introduced plants, including canola. They often flock to the crowns of trees, communally cracking seed pods and cones. They will forage on the ground less often. They are messy and noisy eaters, frequently dropping large amounts of cones, pods and other feeding material to the ground.

They are gregarious, preferring to move, roost and feed in small parties or huge flocks of hundreds (and more rarely – given population decline – thousands of birds). They will also flock with similar species; other black cockatoos. They are monogamous. They become sexually mature at around 4 years, and can live for up to 60 years. They are a mobile species, needing to move sequentially through the landscape, which means they need corridors of protected land to provide food and prevent high mortality rates. Fragmentation of feeding habitat can cause the starvation and impairment of fledglings and juveniles. They compete for nesting hollows with invasive parrots (like the corella), galahs, ducks, birds of prey (like owls) and European honeybees. They are also threatened by the clearing of feeding/breeding grounds, removed or destroyed nesting hollows and illegal poaching for the pet trade. They are listed as Endangered in Australia. Their population has fallen by more than 50% in 45 years, with many of their original breeding grounds having been abandoned. To help preserve the Carnaby’s black cockatoo, licensed aviculturalists (including those at Perth Zoo) maintain captive populations for the purpose of breeding, rehabilitation and re-introduction. They are known as the ‘rain bird,’ due to their habit of moving into areas of high rainfall after the summer breeding season.

Golden Sun Moth as Totem
Prints available here

MEANINGS – The Healing Sun

A profound, and possibly unexpected connection to the sun and its magic, the power of the north, a connection to grasslands and grasses, your lifestyle is rare and potentially threatened, finding it easier to function from a youthful state of mind, at times, feeling powerless or restricted as an adult, a messenger from the spirit, a connection to gold and the colour gold, a soothing, golden light, being deeply and negatively affected by inclement weather or difficult situations, needing to be a fair weather friend from time to time, metamorphosis, protecting yourself from other people’s problems.


The golden sun moth is a Critically Endangered, medium-sized diurnal moth found in Australia. They have clubbed, instead of brushy antennae, which is unusual for a moth. They are confined to grassy woodlands, and reliant on Austrodanthronia grass species (wallaby grasses). They need at least 40% of this type of grassland to have a good chance of survival. Less than 1% of these temperate grasslands remain, causing drastic reduction and fragmentation in the populations of the golden sun moth. Females are brighter than the males, with bright golden brown colouring that gives them their distinctive name. Females are often flightless, but will fly when disturbed.

They live for approximately two years, though are more likely to only live for 12 months. Females, after mating, lay 200 eggs at the base of grass tussocks. The adults only live for 2-5 days, as they are unable to feed. They prefer North-facing sloped lands. Adults will not fly on days that are wet, overcast, too windy or otherwise affected by inclement weather. As males will not fly more than 100 metres from their patch of wallaby grasses, populations 200 metres apart are considered isolated. Adult males spend their short lives hovering/patrolling about 1 metre above the grass to look for females. Environments that support golden sun moths are often grazed by cattle and sheep; which can cause further decline in populations. However, in areas of light grazing, populations of golden sun moth can potentially be maintained on private land.

Date: 2012-06-16 05:59 pm (UTC)
kehleyr: (black panther power animal)
From: [personal profile] kehleyr
I'm definitely ordering a commission from you in the near future... I just have to save up a little before :-)!

Date: 2012-06-17 01:17 am (UTC)
calculare: (art : companion)
From: [personal profile] calculare
I really enjoy the sound of cockatoos. I remember once when I was camping in Central Australia, I'd wandered off a bit to take some photos at sunrise, and a flock of Red-Tailed Black Cockatoos flew overhead, screeching. They just sound so amazingly joyous and free, somehow. And (although I'm not sure if they were Carnaby's) I do remember the sound of Cockatoos after the rain when I was walking on the southern part of the Bibbulmun track. So, I really enjoyed your description of the first totem; it seems so fitting.

Date: 2012-06-17 02:03 am (UTC)
calculare: (misc : floral)
From: [personal profile] calculare
Even harder when you're short-sighted, like me. :D

My mother and I were once quizzing one another on what we would miss most about Australia if we had to move overseas. She opted for the ‘red centre’, and I opted for the sound of magpies caroling and cockatoos screeching.


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