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Anyone else like Birds AND planes?

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Old Friday 11th October 2013, 07:06   #1
wolfbirder
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Anyone else like Birds AND planes?

I mention this, as sporadically (as is highlighted within another thread at present) it is clear people have an interest in aviation as well as birds.

Just wondered whether there was a link due to a fascination with flight?

Of course the vast majority will have no dual interest, but I suspect there are more than just a handful, tho this thread may prove otherwise.

I actually grew up as a child preferring planes, loving to go to local airshows, then national ones, and also loved the occasional day out at the airport. I love WW2 planes too, and have quite a collection of a variety of aircraft types.

Birding came along when I was about 36, and for the last 15 years I have never looked back. I still retain an interest for planes too, and on a recent birding trip to Hungary, I was fascinated to see a collection of ex Malev airliners at Budapest airport Terminal 2, where I paid the small fee to enter and was shown aboard and into the cockpits of 1960's Russian built airliners.

Anyway, just wondered..................
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Old Friday 11th October 2013, 12:34   #2
Euan Buchan
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Like you I was obsessed with Planes when I was younger my Grandpa would take me to a gate near the Airport and we watched Planes land and take off Edinburgh Airport used to have a balcony you could go to even though you weren't flying and watch planes there so went there a few times would go to Airshows as well then had a interest in Space and stars then Birding came along and never looked back I still like Planes but not as obsessed I was when I was younger I still look at planes when one flies by and when I'm at the airport I like looking out at the runway to see what's going on.
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Old Friday 11th October 2013, 12:43   #3
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Well there's me of course. Growing up in Farnborough I was aware of planes from an early age and the idea of flight fascinated me. With the MOD(PE) fleet at Farnborough, the airshow, the Army's helicopters and the late Doug Arnold's collection of warbirds at Blackbushe I went the military route and a diet of Dambusters, Battle of Britain etc sent me into warbirds where 633 Squadron hooked me specifically onto the wonderful multi-role De Havilland Mosquito. I have sat in the pilot's seat of the prototype Mosquito, W4050 - a good blag for a spotter!

Birding came later from watching birds flitting about at airfields during plane-spotting trips all the way down the great array of RAF and USAF airfields that during the Cold War held hundreds of modern military aircraft (now mostly museum pieces - how time flies. I just wondered what the birds were. What a slippery slope that turned out to be!

These days I still make a lot of effort over Farnborough airshow, attend Duxford's Flying Legends annually and of late have started to take notice of places with good backgrounds e.g. Bournemouth and the five-yearly Dambusters anniversary flypasts at the Derwent reservoir - which is also good for Red Grouse of course. These take second place to twitches though!

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Old Friday 11th October 2013, 13:24   #4
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I'm a fan of both and have been since I was a kid.

Living quite near RAF Biggin Hill as a kid and went to my first airshow there in 1963. Me and a cheeky chum skipped school and went to BH and almost got a flight in this Lancaster NX611 that had landed there en-route from Australia in 1965, but an engine fire stopped that so we had to make do with with sitting in the cockpit - wow indeed!

I managed to sit in the prototype Mosquito W4050 when the Salisbury Hall museum first opened, that made quite an impression on this schoolboy let me tell you

The culmination for me happened a few weeks ago when for my 60's birthday treat (delayed from last year) I flew in a helicopter with this MkVb Spitfire that accompanied us for 20 minutes, as we flew over the white cliffs of Dover - quite sublime
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Old Friday 11th October 2013, 13:39   #5
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Another birthday present here.

That's me in the front seat.
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Old Friday 11th October 2013, 14:36   #6
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When I was a kid I lived in Coventry where they held the annual King's Cup Air Race at the local airfield. This was a four-lap handicap race. I can still remember the first plane to take off (a Tiger Moth) beginning its final lap just as a privately-owned Spitfire was racing down the grass underneath it to begin its first lap. One year a Miles Sparrowjet was entered. The handicappers obviously didn't have a clue as to how to handicap this, the first jet to be entered in the race, as it went over the finishing line without another plane in sight. Usually they were wing-tip to wing-tip.

In 1953, the 50th anniversary of the first powered flight, they had planes ranging from a reproduction of the first Wright Brothers plane (which flew) to a Sabre which gave off a sonic boom as it hurtled over our heads. For an 11 year old this was the stuff of dreams.
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Old Friday 11th October 2013, 14:46   #7
Euan Buchan
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Yesterday Dad Grandpa and I sat in a 4 seater small plane for a hour fly around the countryside it was nice here's a photo if Grandpa in the front.
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Old Friday 11th October 2013, 15:29   #8
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Indeed. Got to experience the Reno Air Races (in their prime) 13 times with my now 89 year old (Army Air Corps / Tequila drinking) father-in-law. Loads of other air shows over the years. Also had a 'Bombing and Missile Range' near my college. 'Air Guard' guys loved having us on the range. A10's, F4's, A7's, etc. Then we'd get to play in the destroyed commuter buses and such and collect depleted uranium 'mushroomed' rounds. Didn't say we were smart. Have always had the greatest interest in all WW2 aircraft. All theaters. Allied. Such history.
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Old Friday 11th October 2013, 15:34   #9
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Do flying fish count?....
Up powered Boeing B-377-SG, has 4 Pratt & Whitney T-34-P turbos,
instead original Allisons. Didnt fly here in daylight, waited until calm night.
Were shy about gawking and roadway traffic problems when it was getting airborne
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Old Friday 11th October 2013, 15:41   #10
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Thank you for your replies folks! When I looked for any responses a few hours ago there were none and I was looking very sad and on my "jack jones".

A wonderful combination of interests I feel these two are, over the years it was planes first for me, then since 1998 birds, and now I can fondly indulge in both as I get older.

I have been abroad walking up and down lines of aircraft in the Nevada Desert at Marana, Mojave, Davis-Monthan AFB etc - wonder what birds I saw (or could have seen!!).

Perhaps I was bound to find other hobbies as my football team (my 3rd hobby) is Wolves !

PS Love that Guppy photo!
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Old Friday 11th October 2013, 15:54   #11
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Many years ago a good birding friend (and BFer) and I set off for the far north to see if we could find a Brunnich's Guillemot in the massive colonies along the top end of Scotland.

After nearly a week and having looked carefully at many, many auks, we reached the ferry to Cape Wrath, to find that the Army Birdwatching Society had block-booked the ferry for the afternoon. The RAF Tornado force was bombing the living daylights out of Eilean nan Garbh with live thousand-pounders so we walked out onto Faraid Head for an afternoon of extreme entertainment of jets going whoosh and bombs going bang. Or is that boom?

Anyway, as the tide came in the bay in front of us filled up with auks, we sighed and went back on the chain gang, scrutinising each one quickly and going on to the next - and the next - and the next - and the hang on just a minute. Is that a fish in your beak or are you just tomium striped? I concentrated hard - and the bird dived. When it came up the stripe was still there.

With a good deal of tension vibrating from my vocal cords I suggested my companion should take a look through my scope. He was confronted as the bird rotated gently in the wavelets by a good view of a stripe along the bill and a sharply pointed white arrowhead leading up from the breast into the black neck. It was a summer-plumaged Brunnich's Guillemot and many beers were drunk that night.

All because we were enjoying the jets!

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Old Friday 11th October 2013, 15:57   #12
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A few shot locally (within about 10 miles of home) when I was out birding; East Chevington, Druridge Pools, Druridge Bay, Newbiggin and Cresswell;
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Old Friday 11th October 2013, 15:59   #13
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And a few more from the same area.

These were all on Druridge Bay; Bondicarr, Cresswell, 2 from Druridge, and East Chevington for the Sea King.
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Old Friday 11th October 2013, 16:20   #14
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Great shots BW - that 3rd Tornado shot in your first sequence is superb! Top quality photo.

I can relate to all these posts. Euan says when he is at an airport, he always has a look out of the window. Me too, though I used to like what I saw back in the 80's with noisy piston airliners and "polluting" 707's, more than the modern squeeky clean stuff.

John, that is a great story. Several years ago on the Lincolnshire Wash, I saw my first ever Montagu's Harriers - 6 of them, all using the RAF bombing mound (marked by a cross) - RAF Harriers were bombing Harriers with dummy bombs. They didnt get struck, but seemed happy to tolerate the noise of the jets and the bombing. A surreal experience!

Planes I have managed to get in the seat of are all museum exhibits - Jet Provost, Boeing 707, IL18 and Tu134. Irony is, I don't particularly like flying!
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Old Friday 11th October 2013, 16:31   #15
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Thanks Nick.

You don't get long with those tornadoes. They are over and gone before you hear them coming.

In the old days (1980s) we used to get all sorts over here on a daily basis - vulcans, tornadoes, jaguars, phantoms, buccaneers, F111s, A10s, all sorts, most of them low level, even the odd B52 doing passes updating the radar signatures at Boulmer.

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Old Friday 11th October 2013, 16:40   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wolfbirder View Post
I mention this, as sporadically (as is highlighted within another thread at present) it is clear people have an interest in aviation as well as birds.

Just wondered whether there was a link due to a fascination with flight?

Of course the vast majority will have no dual interest, but I suspect there are more than just a handful, tho this thread may prove otherwise.

I actually grew up as a child preferring planes, loving to go to local airshows, then national ones, and also loved the occasional day out at the airport. I love WW2 planes too, and have quite a collection of a variety of aircraft types.

Birding came along when I was about 36, and for the last 15 years I have never looked back. I still retain an interest for planes too, and on a recent birding trip to Hungary, I was fascinated to see a collection of ex Malev airliners at Budapest airport Terminal 2, where I paid the small fee to enter and was shown aboard and into the cockpits of 1960's Russian built airliners.

Anyway, just wondered..................
I had 35 years in the RAF, aircraft engineer. Of course being interested in birds was shared with an interest in aviation - I remember reading my first copies of Flying Review and Air Pictorial just after the time my Grandpa had died.

He had taken me long walks into the country and describe nature in detail - insects, birds, plants - all naturally expected from a foreman carpenter in a foundry, because one of the great strengths of Scottish society at that time was the literate and articulate working class - I still have a few of his letters, and boy, could he write, despite having left school at 13. His friends grouped together to buy all the newspapers between them and they were avid library-goers. He could tell me of the first aeroplanes seen in our county, and also could point out the damage in our town from lone Dornier raiders machine-gunning the streets before they flew back to Norway.

Didn't everyone have a Grandpa like that? My father had been aircrew in WWII, and so it was inevitable that I became interested in aircraft.
MJB
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Old Friday 11th October 2013, 16:48   #17
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I like big white planes ...scheduled preferred. As for others, only if the ticket is fairly cheap and it's taking me somewhere nice :)
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Old Friday 11th October 2013, 17:46   #18
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Did a double take when this thing flew by, at the local patch
it was sharing airspace with Trumpeter swans. Was headed to Scott AFB, few miles off it's nose
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Old Friday 11th October 2013, 17:58   #19
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A bright morning at Derwent Dam in May this year:

Red Grouse
Lancaster X 2
Spitfire PR XIX
Tornado (617 Sqn)

John
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Old Friday 11th October 2013, 18:01   #20
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Quote:
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Did a double take when this thing flew by, at the local patch
it was sharing airspace with Trumpeter swans. Was headed to Scott AFB, few miles off it's nose
Lucky to get that. All gone now - the march of time....

John
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Old Friday 11th October 2013, 18:04   #21
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Indeed, saw the last VC10 at Cosford show last year!

More wonderful photos, this time from John.

Oh, and a great story MJB.
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Old Friday 11th October 2013, 18:14   #22
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I like big white planes ...scheduled preferred. As for others, only if the ticket is fairly cheap and it's taking me somewhere nice :)
They're called buses, Jos.
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Old Friday 11th October 2013, 18:23   #23
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They're called buses, Jos.
Na, hate buses with a passion, would rather walk, hitch-hike or simply not go
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Old Friday 11th October 2013, 18:40   #24
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Indeed, saw the last VC10 at Cosford show last year!

More wonderful photos, this time from John.

Oh, and a great story MJB.
Just read the VC-10 had been retired, in September.
Banked "Lanc" that John has there is magnificent!
Thoughts of MJB, has myself remembering back, recollecting some conversations
of co-workers, mentors, my dad and uncle.
Can we help being drawn to mechanical apparitions, when the feathered wonders are considered.
Cheers, everyone.
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Old Friday 11th October 2013, 18:58   #25
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Nice one Bill. Great to have your contribution from across the pond.

Jos, I bet you do go on Air"buses"!
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