Monday, May 31, 2010

Australia is birders heaven

I do not have a birding guide with me 
so feel free to do the identifying for me :-)
Species No 1


No 2 is a diver....



If you zoom in you can see a fish escaping and 
another wriggling at the end of the beak.

All these pictures taken from the jetty at Esperance WA. This jetty has a tameish sea-lion which hangs about the beach waiting for anglers to throw it fish.

A bit about W Australia mines

When Herbert Hoover was a young man he was a brilliant mining engineer. He lived in this house....

overlooking this hole in the ground....

About a kilometre across and 300 metres deep.
BTW: The house was a very nice B&B

This is the Sons of Gwalia mine near Leonora WA but the most interesting thing is that it is no longer an open cut mine. At a certain level below the surface they have drilled into the rock face and are now spiralling down and along for kilometres underground.

Here's an entrance of another mine.... a similar situation. The truck is bigger than my house. At the big-pit in Kalgoorlie each load is 225 tonnes and carries $10,000 in refined gold after processing and from the viewing gallery one can see at least six of them climbing out of the hole all day long.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Road Train

If the Road Hauliers Assoc' have their way we will get these on the IDR

A spot of Australian culture

Here is a spot of Australian culture. If you want to know what a 'skimpy' is send me an email. :-)

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Mt Magnet - Leonora.

May 28

Good roads these days and lots of stopping to photograph the wildlife. Mostly dead on the roadside but the crows are entertaining and the wedge-tailed eagles are magnificent. The lady in the library at Sandstone recommended a night staying in Herbert Hoover's house overlooking the Sons of Gwalia mine near Leonora. Herbert seems to have been a brilliant mining engineer who happened to become President of the USA. He had a nice bedroom but a little nippy in the morning. Gwalia has been a ghost town on and off over the years More about that next blog.

For the astronomers: it's full-moon but with the moon in the heart of Scorpius I could see all the main stars right sown to the pair at the sting, despite horrendous lighting at the adjacent gold-mine.

Here's a wedge-tail for the nature-lovers.

This one took off with an underslung load just after the camera clicked.

Perth-Mt Magnet.

27 May

We got free of the rain and this morning (28th) is sunny. Drove last part in the dark as Payne's Find was not good accommodation and we decided to move on. Easy road though. Good meal in the bar last night. Four lamb chops per helpng - very unheathy. Met Jenny and daughter from Geraldton, just got rid of husband. Australians just love talking to strangers - don't come if you like your privacy.

The common cormorant or shag puts its head inside a paper bag. This one's looking after the boats at a W Australian marina.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Binocular, Telescope and Optical World
I found this guy near Perth. I was prepared to fork out for new binos, but with a bit of heaving we unscrewed one of the oculars and rethreaded it and they are fine now, so Alun can put the screwdriver away. They will not resolve any stars in Omega Cen though. So thanks to Keith and regards to all at Astronomy Group West Australia.

And now if you want a picture here's a friendly wild parrot who wanted to show-off for the camera outside a typical Aussie teashop....

And for all those who don't believe what we tell them about the Earth's tilt these tree are losing their leaves in May....