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Old Monday 18th October 2010, 13:36   #1
Swissboy
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Lord Howe Island October/November 2007

Ball's Pyramid is located about 23 kilometers SSE from Lord Howe Island, Australia. With a height of at least 552 meters, it is, apparently, the world's tallest sea stack, a remnant of a huge volcano. This place is teaming with fine seabirds. The attached pictures show it from the NE, as approached by boat coming from Lord Howe, and from the SW. The latter reveals that this sea stack has a much broader appearance from the SW.
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Old Monday 18th October 2010, 13:46   #2
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Ball's Pyramid, two additional pictures

Surrounding this most impressive rock by boat, one gets another very pointed appearance from the SE, and again a rather flattish one from the NE.

This rock is a breeding place for the rare Kermadec and Providence Petrels.

Access to the area by boat from Lord Howe depends on sea conditions. Landing is not allowed and would be extremely difficult anyway. But just surrounding it, is one of the most exciting birding experiences I've ever had.
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Old Monday 18th October 2010, 14:30   #3
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Lord Howe Island, Australia: location pictures

Here are some pictures from Lord Howe Island, dating from October/November 2007. As one can see, the weather did not fully cooperate.

The first picture shows the Lagoon bordering the settlement, with the fringing barrier reef. In the background is Mt. Lidgbird hidden in the clouds. White Terns often fly over the Lagoon.

Then the Admiralty Islands to the NE, home of the Grey Ternlets.

Finally, the northern rocky drop-off from Malabar Hill (208 m elevation). Red-tailed Tropicbirds are supposed to be seen here. But we did not see any at this location.
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--PS: That's a Sooty Falcon on the avatar, photo taken near Sharm el Sheik, Egypt. My highest priority raptor at the time.
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Last edited by Swissboy : Monday 18th October 2010 at 15:54.
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Old Monday 18th October 2010, 14:39   #4
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What lovely pictures Robert - thanks very much.

I bet you enjoyed digging all those out and recalling your trip

D
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Old Monday 18th October 2010, 14:47   #5
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Lord Howe, second set of location pictures

The western end of the airfield, with a view of the almost fully visible Mt. Lidgbird (777 m), and the cloud covered Mt. Gower (875 m).

Second: the SW coast with the steep walls of Mt. Lidgbird and Mt. Gower.

Third: E-coast with Mt. Lidgbird in the background. The edge of a Sooty Tern colony is barely visible at the left margin.

Finally, a view into one of the woods to the north of the village with lots of Muttonbird (Flesh-footed Shearwater) nesting holes.
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Old Monday 18th October 2010, 14:53   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by delia todd View Post
What lovely pictures Robert - thanks very much.

I bet you enjoyed digging all those out and recalling your trip

D
Definitely so! I'll post just a few more from Lord Howe.

But I assume Christmas Island needs some pictures as well. ;-)
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Old Monday 18th October 2010, 14:55   #7
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What a breathtakingly beautiful place!
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Old Monday 18th October 2010, 14:57   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Swissboy View Post
Definitely so! I'll post just a few more from Lord Howe.

But I assume Christmas Island needs some pictures as well. ;-)
It does indeed Robert... it even needs a new article

You're right Nicole... a bit greener than your desert eh?

D
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Old Monday 18th October 2010, 14:59   #9
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Quote:
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You're right Nicole... a bit greener than your desert eh?
D
Wish there was a real desert
(or a clean beach,...)
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Old Monday 18th October 2010, 15:18   #10
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Lord Howe Island location pictures third set

The Lagoon from the settlement with Mt Lidgbird partly hidden in the clouds, and the highest elevation, Mt Gower almost fully visible. It's on top of Mt Gower that a very few Lord Howe Woodhens had survived from rat predation, and the present stock of the lowland birds originates from those birds which were used in a breeding program. Rat poison in tubes is distributed widely to allow the woodhens to survive now. (A screen shot from a low quality video as the fourth picture shows a Lord Howe Woodhen sticking its head under such a tube and digging there intensively. So it's important that the poisen is placed way back or the birds may be poisened if it falls out! The same bird also attacked a dying rat nearby.)

Then a sign that may well be endemic for Lord Howe, warning from Flesh-footed Shearwaters that can be on the road after dark. These birds need to land on an open bit of land before running to their burrow. We had to lift one of them off the cargo platform of a pick-up truck. It did not manage to get over the rim after its clumsy landing.

Third, a picture that comes closest to how the nave French painter Henri Rousseau imagined the tropics which he had never seen. This amazing similarity (to me at least) struck me when waiting for the plane at the airfield.
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--PS: That's a Sooty Falcon on the avatar, photo taken near Sharm el Sheik, Egypt. My highest priority raptor at the time.
What's your species on the avatar? I often have no clue
!

Last edited by Swissboy : Monday 18th October 2010 at 16:27. Reason: wrong picture
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