Monday, October 19, 2015

Jamestown Airshow 2015

On Sunday, with some friends, we made an early start and headed up through the Clare Valley to the Mid North, and Jamestown for their triennial airshow. There was a fierce crosswind blowing that meant some displays were cancelled, but that did not phase the wing-walker whose display had us all holding our breath! (almost)

The airshow programme was a great mix of aircraft. There were vintage planes of all shapes and sizes from the luxurious Stinson of the 1930s to the giant russian Antonov An2 built from the late 40s.

There were aerobatics from high performance stunt planes like the Giles G-202 and the Extra 300, but Paul Bennet in his Pitts Special stole the show with his amazing display, and then his crazy stunt involving a motorbike jumping over him.

There were jets in the air, (L139 Albatross and Aermacci S211) and on the ground were the jet car powered by an engine from a Sabreliner executive jet showed it acceleration. (The pyrotechnics also started a fire and kept the local CFS busy

But everyone had really come to see the warbirds, vintage military aircraft. WW1 was represented by a replica Nieuport 11.  I didn't realise they had GPS in WW1!

The Trojan, from the Korean and Vietnam eras is one of my favourites, as is the CAC Boomerang which saw service in WW2

The P40 Kittyhawk always give a good show, and the kids love those sharksteeth!

The real highlight for me though was the Grumman TBM Avenger, a huge beast of a plane with a 14 cylinder engine that powered around the skies.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Weekend away

It's not often that we manage to get away for a long weekend. Last weekend we went to Port Victoria on the Yorke Peninsula.  With a population around 350, Port Victoria boasts a hotel, a general store and a kiosk/post office. In it's heyday, it was a thriving port for the bagged cereal trade, where bags of wheat and barley were manually loaded onto small boats at the jetty, before being transferred to ships anchored offshore. Being on the west coast of the peninsula it also has some beautiful sunsets.

I didn't have far to go to see some birds, with a pair of inquisitive Singing Honeyeaters coming close, closer, and sometimes too close.

There was also a regular Nankeen Kestrel hunting between us and the beach

On the boat ramp there were the usual pelicans and Silver Gulls, and on the local beach, Pacific Gulls and a single Hooded Plover.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Outer Harbour - Black-faced Cormorant colony

On Sunday, I had the opportunity to join a boat trip out to the Black-faced Cormorant colony on the Outer Harbour breakwater.

As we made our way to the boat, there was a lovely Rufous Night-heron, who was quite happy to pose for us.

As we rounded the breakwater, we saw  a few Cormorants on the water, and one flew in nicely to land in our wake.

There were quite a few cormorants still at the colony, some were tolerant of the Silver Gulls, others less so.

The chicks were  all very well grown, and some looked bigger then the parents!

There was always a procession of birds flying around the boat, including Black-faced and Pied Cormorants, Silver Gulls, Crested Terns and Australian Pelicans.

As usual, the Caspian Terns were lazing on the sand bar in the middle of the river!, but this time we could get a little closer.

On the Port River, we saw HMAS Hobart, the first of the new Air Warfare Destroyers, which is nearing completion.

On the way back, we stopped at the end of the breakwater, where the usual Sort-nosed Fur Seal (formerly New Zealand Fur Seal) was lounging.

We finished as we started, with the Rufous Night-heron still happy to pose for portraits.

Thanks to Skipper Tom, and fellow birders Alan, John and Leoni for a very convivial trip!