11 March 2011


A Black Necked Grebe in Hakodate today. The EXIF data shows it was taken at around 11.30am, about 5 hours later this area was flooded as a result of the tsunami.

I was home at 2.46pm when the quake hit, it was pretty f**king scary. It lasted 3 or 4 minutes, the building was swaying, things were flying off shelves and water was sloshing out of the fish tank. I switched on the TV and watched the events unfold, wow what shocking images. 

There were several large aftershocks but it looks like Hakodate got off pretty lightly, it is a few hundred KM north of the epicenter and I live far enough from the coast not to panic.

The Back Necked Grebe seemed to have some kind of beak deformity. I've actually been looking for both Grebes and Crossbills this last week, this bird seems to tick both boxes.

There are at least 2 Great Egrets on the local river, they sometimes perch on the rooftops.

The Siskins are still around.

Today I finished off on the beach, a 'Tamiyr' type Gull was there.......note the yellwish legs.

This one had dark eyes, I thought it may have been a Thayers Gull but it isn't. It's just a Vega Gull I think, it had dark wingtips when it flew off.......

I had a couple of semi funny trivial flippant little incidents that happened this week I was going to write about but after the events today in Japan I don't really feel like it.

Ons of the people I sometimes go up to Yakumo with actually lives and works down near Sendai, I hope he's OK.



  1. Good to hear you are ok. Bloody awful day. I'm so tired. Too many disasters for 2011 and it's barely mid-March. Love the exposures of the grebes and love the second shot of the egret. Cheers

  2. Good to hear you're OK too Russell.........

  3. Hi Stu.
    Yes good to know you are ok.... Nice shots of beautiful birds ;-)

  4. That Siskin is a smart little bird. Great captures, as usual.

    I am glad to know you are OK. It looks pretty scary on TV. On the posiive side, I hope you are enjoying the cricket...

  5. Devastating day for you guys, there. I feel sorry to hear about the losses.
    Try to stay safe.

    Best, Szimi

  6. Sorry about the cricket; I thought England may win against B'desh as they were 8 down needing 50 plus. What do I know about cricket!

  7. Glad your OK, just heard from my bro who is 50 miles north of Tokyo at the mo - he's OK too.
    Gull looks like Vega to me, nice P10 sneaking in in the second pic and O & L say they can have darkish eyes in breeding plumage.



  8. Thanks for all the comments.

    Galllcissa-it's a good job I don't really worry about the short forms of the game then!

    Davo-your brother probably had a much worse experience than I did.

  9. Very relieved to see a post from you! I was unaware of anything until I got to work this morning and saw headlines and some photos on my internet homepage. Hakodate didn't look all that far away from the epicenter on my map. I hope you continue to stay safe.


  10. Stuart, Glad to hear you are OK. I was thinking of you, and those less fortunate in Japan today. Take care. Best regards from Preston, UK.

  11. Glad to hear that you okay and family.Only time will heal this catastrophe.

    Be well and safe.

  12. Stu,

    Glad to hear you're far enough from the coast to be relatively safe.

    All the Best

  13. From a very wet and soggy far north queensland, glad you are okay.

    'Aunty' Jan

  14. Thanks again for all the comments.......

    Hi Janet, hope you are well, next time we meet up we can swap stories about natural disasters.....

    Hi Paul, thanks for the thought.......

  15. Just reading your description of the 'quake makes me shudder. You seem very philosophical about it Stu but it must have been very scary. Glad you're OK and back to normal as possible. That "level" egret is a great shot - must be difficult to capture.

  16. I'm Sorry about the dreadful disaster over there,glad you are ok. That last photo of the Gull with its beak open is a real stunner,and so is the Siskin.

  17. Good to see you're ok, Stu. The events over there sound nightmarish. Keep safe.

  18. Very nice image stu! Im glad to hear you are ok after the sad events in Japan!

  19. As the other comments - glad to hear you are OK. It's been a while since i've been to your blog. It's looking really good these days. Great shots as usual. Simon.

  20. Thanks again for your concerns everyone.

    Now we're fretting over the nuclear power stations, it's a few hundred mules from here at least. Simon-thank god we don't live in Fukushima-ken anymore eh?

    No panic buying yet, still lots of food in the shops but long queues at some of the gas stations. Looks like power cuts are on the agenda too, dunno if it'll affect use here in Hokkaido or not. Compared to the Sendai region we are so fortunate though.............


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