Friday, 1 November 2013

Argentina was good, the food was great, much better than India that is for sure and I fell for the Chimango Caracara’s who are enchanting birds of prey. The trip there was pretty reasonable, no disasters which is always good, although it is a bloody long way that is for sure.


The conference was excellent, the World Working Group for Birds of Prey and Owls did not show up, which I have to say did not surprise me. Miguel was more tolerant about it than I would have been. However I will say no more, but I will think it! The Neo tropical Network were there and it was great to see them. The papers were excellent, the company very good, the wine first class and all in all it was a great success. Ruth and I had planned to go on three trips, we did two of them and they were very good, but tiring, and I am not a serious birder in comparison to many on the trips, who were very serious. There are only so many ducks I need to see before I get bored, now raptors, that is a different matter, but LBJ’s – hummmmmmmmmmm. We cancelled the last trip as we realised that with the trip and the travel, meaning that we would arrive back in Buenos Aires after midnight, this was not a good idea. So on the Sunday we went with friends to the airport to see if we could get an earlier flight. The whole trip back was amazing, we kept thinking that something would go wrong but it didn’t. We got on the 10.30 am flight, went to the hotel that Miguel had recommended and it was great, had a lovely lunch and a walk, rested for the rest of the day, got to the airport on time, got through immigration and security like a breeze, got on the plane home and got upgraded to business!!! Hooray, what a pleasure, thank you BA.


I got home at about 12,00 noon on Tuesday, in time to fly birds, have tea and see all the staff who were in. The hospital has come on a treat, it is looking really good on the outside and right now the plasterer is in and hopefully it will be completely plastered by the end of Sunday. The boxes should arrive soon as well.


We have to wait until the plaster is dry before we can paint and the tiles on the floor can’t be done until the painting is complete. I wish I was going to be here for it, it is very frustrating not to be.


The birds were all well, the dogs pleased to see me, and I hope the staff as well. It is lovely to be home. It has been a little damp towards the end of the week, but was a stunning autumn day when I arrived back. My Hobby is going really well, and so are both the Merlins, the Red-footed Falcon has a way to go, but he will be fine and Helen’s American Kestrel is going really well. All three Lanners are coming on as are the two new eagles, Steppes and Steller’s. My Red Kite is good but bitey! Holly’s is a brilliant flyer but not focusing yet. The owls are all pretty much ready for the first Owl Evening which starts while I am still away.


This next trip to India is mainly a big meeting and reporting from all countries involved with SAVE to see where we are, and what we need to do to get to the point where we can release vultures back to the wild, and stop worrying about NSAIDs. It will be a while yet that is for sure. I leave on Monday and am back at about the same time as the last trip on the 11th, and then apart from a couple of meetings, I am going nowhere!!


Everyone has worked really hard on the hospital, and although there is still some stuff to do, it is getting there. It will be a huge relief when it is done, it will also make a huge difference to us all to have a proper facility to deal with injured and sick birds.


The aviaries are being sorted out ready for the next breeding season already!! The volunteers and staff have been doing really well with the nest building, Holly had a picture of John wearing one which I think has gone on Facebook. I still have not worked out how to get onto Facebook. Some of the birds may lay early, so we want to be ready. The incubation and brooder rooms will be refurbished after the hospital is done and Holly is looking forward to getting it all neat and tidy and ready to go.


The grass seed on the front lawn is coming up nicely and we start pruning in the gardens next week. We still don’t know if Sorrel is pregnant or not, I am certainly not laying any money on it anyway. However by the time I get back things should be much more obvious.


Still have to get clothes ready for India, so I must put in the last of the washing now.



I have to say that keeping a weblog can at times become compulsive and at other times a chore. Sometimes I am berrated for not keeping it up and sometimes I get wonderful comments from people who follow the news of the Centre.

It is fun to share the daily goings on here, some good and some bad, some funny and some sad, but all a part of our daily lives.
And as I said before its a pretty cool to be here and it is a great place to visit, you should try coming and watching the birds and meeting the staff and of course the dogs.

An interesting video on Lead

An interesting video on Lead

I find it staggering that people who want to hunt don't see the value in changing their ammunition from lead to a safer product. We have stopped using lead in petrol, in paint, in our water pipes, but they still want to use lead - ah well, apparently eating it not only kills birds but leads to reduced intelligence in humans......................

NO ONE is asking you to stop legal and genuine hunting, they are just asking you to change your ammunition!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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