Sunday 6 May 2012

Ticking down to UK and Svalbard

Well only a couple of days left at home and it is off to the Northern hemisphere again.  Seems the timing is perfect with the weather just starting to get a little cool in the evenings and mornings...seems to have been a relatively warm autumn, but things are starting to change now!  So although I have only been home just on two weeks, I leave again on Wednesday.

Have three cruises in the UK, France, and Channel Islands through to Edinburgh on the Island Sky, which should be great.  Let's hope for some nice weather and stunning wildlife along the way!  Then I have a night catching up with Sue Flood and a couple of days with Mum and Dad, before heading to Norway for a pre-extension and then Svalbard for four week-long trips on the National Geographic Explorer there.  Should be awesome, and can't wait to get back there.  The last time I was there was 2008, and I've been wanting to get back there ever since.  This time with a bit more in the way of camera gear, so should be able to hopefully maximise my photographic opportunities.

Meanwhile, during the two weeks back here it has been busy busy, catching up with friends and family, and getting some work done.  Couple of days bird monitoring out at the Cape Kidnappers Sanctuary, a few days helping friends out on their farm, a 40th birthday party (all weekend!), and progressing work on our house build planing...phew!  Plus of course the usual photographic imaging chores, summer season tour planning, etc etc.  Some exciting news was my first sales via Nature Picture Library in the UK.  It has been a long process having my images selected, submitted, displayed, etc, but very exciting to get some proceeds, and although a small step, it is a step in the right direction.  So very excited about that!  As far as imaging work here at home, I'm still trying to catch up and edit photos from the Antarctic over the January period, let lone stuff from the last trip Brazil to Trinidad!

I also put a couple of clips together, my first uploads to YouTube.  The first was a bit of a comedy clip of an interaction with a massive grasshopper on the ship in Tobago.  Caused a few hysterics!  The second uploaded today is a short clip of a male bearded bellbird calling at the Asa Wright Nature Centre.  This is a wild bird, and you can hear other males calling in the background.  What an amazing bird these are, and the call is just incredibly loud.  Sounds like a machine, and so unreal when you see this bird just slightly larger than a European starling making this incredible call.  Very cool.

So first up is the grasshopper clip...

And secondly the bearded bellbird...

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