BAD landing

I was looking for a particular shot last night and found instead another old favourite. It must have been a good morning – in fact it was the day before I retired! There were plenty of water birds on the ponds in front of the Tower Hide at Mai Po. Two images made me smile as I flicked through the day’s shots. Both are landings. The first one has to be the scruffiest looking cormorant I have seen. I don’t think this bird is going to win any beauty pageants soon.

Landing cormorant


The second looks like air traffic control got it all wrong.



The undercarriage is down, the pilot does a last minute visual check and suddenly sees flight GH444 is parked right on the runway below him, waiting it seems to take off. I don’t recall what happened next.

Thanks for all the comments about the ticker and AF. I bought myself today a gadget for checking your own BP and heart rate. It also warns if the heart rate is erratic. Designed by the Japanese but made in China. I hope it is accurate. Mrs. Ha wants to try it on Lulu. I suspect the cuff would go round Lulu’s torso, not her front leg. I don’t think this is a runner. Work tomorrow although nothing too onerous. Then some more serious use of the brain is required on Tuesday and Wednesday. Not much else this week. Suddenly the sun is out, the temperature is in the 30s (Celsius) and the RH is up to 95%. The heat is on.

32 thoughts on “BAD landing

  1. I totally agree about the shag – ain’t nevah seen one quite so disreputable ! 😀
    The cranes ( ? ) are beautiful, but flight GH444 looks rather grumpy. Bet he won the day.

      • In the house I grew up in, that backed onto a very big, wide bay of the Swan River, shags were omnipresent. But I don’t have one single memory of them. I wonder why …? I remember seeing various other birds … Oh well. One of life’s little mysteries …

  2. Crackin’ shots. The cormorant is seriously scruffy, it looks like it’s covered in oil or something. The heron landing is a hoot, they are such gangly birds but I do like them very much.

  3. I reckon the bird landing was hoping for a loving welcome. But that’s just me. As for the first shot, he or she might have just got away from a marital dispute. It happens between birds especailly if the nest is without proper privacy. With you and your camera lurking about between the reeds, heaven knows how fast that spreads around HK. ‘).

  4. I just read a post on M-R’s blog on photography and it talks about shooting pictures RAW and dump JPEG. I don’t know or understand the difference as I am hardly able to add 2+2. I have a small but much loved little Nikon Coolpix 3100 camera. I am just about getting over my triumph deleting the date on the photos so am loath to do anything too complicated but… has my camera got that RAW option? In the blog about the advantages of using RAW, it clearly showed advantages.
    I really like all the last photos and hope your ticker keeps going for another fifty years and thousands more of those beautiful photos..


    • Gerard, I have good news and bad news. The good news is that the Coolpix 3100 does not have the capability of shooting in RAW. The good news is that processing RAW files is more complicated and that means you don’t have to learn it (yet). RAW has advantages in many respects but not all. Jpegs are simple, easy to share and some cameras produce excellent files in jpeg format. The biggest advantage of RAW is that you can adjust virtually everything in what is known as a RAW converter. It renders many of the settings on your camera irrelevant as you can set them on the computer after you have taken the photo. Jpeg gives you few options.

  5. I’ve seen that cormorant before. Didn’t he used to appear in Noggin the Nog? Often to be found offering wisdom to Olaf the Lofty but in the habit of landing this way. No, he was a great green bird! Delightful shots.

    • Graculus, you mean? It may well be he! I remember him vividly. Olaf the Lofty was a great chap – big contrast to Thor Nogson! Is Oliver Postgate still going?

      • I’m afraid he died a few years ago at a good age. There was an excellent tribute programme at the time of his death but I can’t find it on Youtube. Will have to make up with an episode or two of his tales from the northland. I found Noggin the Nog one of the most magical things when I was little. His voice was a big part of it.

  6. The cormarant looks scruffy as if he’s been fishing a lot in polluted waters. Pic no. 2 is really good. The capture is excellent with the bird in the water looking up at the one coming in for a splash down.

  7. I can imagine in the second image the landing bird screaming, “thats my spot” while the other bird is completely not bothered at all.

  8. I’ve only seen a few cormorants up close and personal and this is by far the least tidy of them all. I would think that flight GH444 is about to abort take off and dive to the left.
    I am happy that you got the self-test for your BP and pulse, Andrew. Seems like you really need to stay on top of that.

  9. You think you have problems, Andrew? Look at the struggles of the poor bird in the first picture!
    But I’m glad you are now monitoring your health. Good for you.

  10. I so see what you mean about that cormorant. I noticed that young birds are bright colored and shiny and entire. As they age, they lose shine, the color fades and all kinds of bits go missing here and there. Same with fishes and lions and people, i guess. Lovely set.

  11. I am charmed by the scruffy cormorant in his/her appropriately bitty surroundings. I also love the EEK! moment in the second shot.
    Good luck with the irregular heart. I was lucky as mine turned out to be as benign as such things can be, but I spent a somewhat alarming year or so being tested and monitored. For what it’s worth, retirement, knowing that it would settle if I ignored it, and only drinking alcohol on special occasions, all made a difference.

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