Re: QOSI at Lord Howe Island

Subject: Re: QOSI at Lord Howe Island
From: Ros Laundon <>
Date: Mon, 09 Nov 1998 19:40:45 +1000
Hi Les,

Thanks for the response.  I'm very pleased to have the backwards flying 
confirmed by
video although it seems almost sacrilegous to question such a beautiful 
performance in
the first place.

I wonder how far out gulls go with comfort.

Ros Laundon.

Thyer wrote:

> Ros Laundon wrote:
>  We watched Red-tailed Tropicbirds over the northern cliffs for a long
> > time.  Do they really fly backwards or is it an illusion?
>         Hi Ros,
>                 I too have enjoyed the spectacle of many Red-tailed 
> Tropicbirds
> performing their aerobatic courtship displays, from the cliffs of
> Malabar.It certainly looked to me like they flew backwards in "ferris
> wheel" style. In the videos I took(in slow motion) you can see the bird
> change the "pitch" of his wings and stall before he seems to fly upwards
> and backwards in a vertical circle.
>                 I rate the display as one of the most spectacular sights I 
> have ever
> seen. I watched for nearly 2 hours only retreating down the hill when I
> felt the burning rays of the sun turning my skin to the bill colour of
> the performers.
> <"There were no gulls, none that we saw anyway.  Is there some reason
> that LHI doesn't suit them?">
>                 An interesting observation. I wonder the same thing myself. 
> There are
> no gulls on the Hawaian Islands either and if you ask an Hawaian why,
> they will say "look how far away from anywhere we are , it's just too
> far for them to fly!!!"
>                 Regards
>                         Les Thyer

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