March 09, 2015

Spring is in the Air (literally)

I tried my last hand on skiing this season; it was an exercise in rubber cement navigation. This is the kind of slush that makes you ‘catch an edge’ (when one ski gets stuck in the snow while the other continues), and break a bone (or two).
Finally smiling; happy that the season is over (she hates everything winter, cold and skiing)
Just as we decided to call it a day, thousands and thousands and thousands of storks glided overhead. Now if that's not an indication that spring is in the air, I do not know what is. They have started their spring migration. They use the uplift of air to glide over the land, while they’re migrating from Africa to Europe. Storks spend the winters in Africa, and are now on their way back to spend spring and summer in Europe.


White storks rely on the uplift of air thermals to soar and glide the long distances of their annual migrations between Europe and Sub-Saharan Africa. For many, the shortest route would take them over the Mediterranean Sea; however, since air thermals do not form over water, they generally detour over land to avoid the trans-Mediterranean flights that would require prolonged energetic wing flapping. It has been estimated that flapping flight metabolizes 23 times more body fat than soaring flight per distance travelled.. Thus, flocks spiral upwards on rising warm air until they emerge at the top, up to 1,200–1,500 m . (Source)

I am doing this with a little pocket camera, okay, so the quality is mediocre

I assume that’s a sure sign of spring. In Holland, when a stork nests in town, it makes it into the newspaper’ storks are pretty unusual where I’m from. It’s pretty impressive to see hundreds of thousands of these majestic birds fly overhead. Unfortunately, each year many hundreds die while flying over Lebanon, because they’re being shot by total morons, for no apparent reason, as this is not even an edible bird. You can sign a petition here. Not sure what good it will do, but hope it will raise awareness.

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