Thursday, October 18, 2018

Dive Bombing Birds of Tofanga

This is our second visit to Tofanga.  We stopped here in August and liked it so much we came back.  On our previous visit it was whale-central.  At least 3 times a day I saw whales breaching and swimming. This time nada.  We think they have all headed back to Antarctica.
Flying over my head after coming towards me then turning up.
Both ends of the island have sand bars - making it very photogenic. On the day we explored the sand bars the cloud formations were stunning -  making for some really good compositions.  There was a clump of trees in the middle of the Island with hundreds of birds holding station right above the trees.  It seemed like they were gathering for some hidden purpose.  I was photographing them from the water's edge on the beach below.  I decided to move up closer to the edge of the trees for better shots.  That turned out to be a mistake.

As I approached the trees the birds started continuously diving down right at me and swooping by - like they were dive-bombing me.  It was scary.  I ran back down to the ocean's edge to put the most distance between me and the trees where they were riding the drafts.  But the island and the beach were pretty narrow at that point.  I was forced to walk near the trees at one point which set them off into another diving and squawking episode.  They were sizable black birds.
There was a group of really beautiful white birds sitting on the beach.  As I approached they flew away.  These guys were shy but cruiser-friendly.  No dive-bombing.

I spent hours on that lovely beach with my bird and crab subjects.  I had 1500 photos when I got back the boat!

Rich is walking on the sand bar to the right of the tree line.

This gives a nice overall view of the island and the line of trees.  You can see all the black birds over the trees.
This shows the pretty steep incline up to the trees.

The beach narrowing as you approach the trees.

My dive-bombing buddies
It was a good island for shelling.  There were 10 puffy sand dollars of various sizes at one end of the island.  They were all in great shape, many with no cracks or missing pieces.  I love them but they are so fragile. They're like an empty egg shell looking for an excuse to crack.  Once a little piece the structural integrity is totally blown.  It's is only a matter of time before it completely crumbles.  I’m trying to figure out how I can fly a few home safely to show my nieces.

There were quite a few hermit crabs out and about.  I get a kick out of watching them.  
This little guy was doggedly trudging all over the hills and valleys.
This crab looked different than all the others I have seen.  I love his 1 huge claw and purple color.

To view all our photos of Tofanga visit Here

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