Today was a particularly quiet shift on Concorde, enlivened by half an hour's chat with a loquacious Welshman named, if you can believe it, Taffy Jones, ex-Navy and the Fire Service, now resident in Lincolnshire. Nice to meet you, Taffy.
Tuesday, 23 May 2017
Sunday, 21 May 2017
Bubbles caught a young, almost-fledged blue tit today, and although we rescued it, Meredith learned how difficult it is to care for a small bird. It reacted to the warmth of her hands but didn't take any food, even small worms or greenfly. We managed to get some sugar solution into its beak but had to leave it out on a branch for the night. Sadie had an Alice in Wonderland-themed party and it was a success.
Saturday, 20 May 2017
The hide provided more good views of a variety of birds. (See blog of 27th January 2017 for the previous visit.) The avocets were sitting on eggs and disputing airspace and water territory with everything else, including the terns nesting nearby. A pair of innocent shovelers got most of the attacks, but we weren't sure whether the one above was love or war. The sedge and reed warblers nesting along the bank were hard to snap clear of the vegetation. The out-of-focus shelduck is a pleasing pattern. The female sparrowhawk came in like an Exocet missile and perched for about a minute on the previously unused post, just long enough for the four photographers in the hide to get some frames.
Friday, 19 May 2017
Thursday, 18 May 2017
Concorde's landing gear is stalky because it has to attain a high angle of attack on take off and landing, due to having no high-lift devices on its wing. It follows the Comet (Pic. 4) and Britannia in having a four-wheel bogie, with the addition of carbon fibre brakes (very new in 1969) and cooling fans. The Vulcan (Pic 5) and the Victor had eight-wheel bogies with smaller diameter tyres, whereas the Valiant had two tandem wheels on each bogie to suit its slimmer wing. Concorde touched down at 150 knots (170 mph) and used reverse thrust as well as its brakes.
Wednesday, 17 May 2017
Sunday, 14 May 2017
Back in the West Mere hide again today, the weather was not the unbroken sunshine forecast, but crucially there was sun when this bittern flew low across the front of the hide. I took 38 frames in just over four seconds. I've never had such an opportunity with a bittern.