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As a Navigator NAUTICAL LOG was always fascinated by bird migrations and how they found their way coming to the conclusion, several decades ago, that it was by following the Earth's magnetic field.  Of course it is not quite that simple as one size does not fit all there are several types of bird movement some quite short.  However some migrate from Northern Canada to Southern South America - now there's a thought wonder if such birds tweet in french, English and Spanish.  Seriously living here in South Florida we are on a major migration route and this is evident this month as the NAUTICAL LOG patio bird feeders are extremely busy.  Florida lies between an Agonic Line and Isogonic Line 10° so it seem to make sense that the long distance migratory birds do make use of the Earth's magnetic field.  The short distance migratory birds likely use the Sun as a compass as most fly by day and rest at night.  However Warblers are night fliers so they reinforce for NAUTICAL LOG the magnetic field navigation system theory.

Just this weekend there was an interesting article in the local paper about all this and coupled with observations of the patio bird feeder got the brain cells working.  In the State of Florida it is possible to observe some 485 species and of those just this last couple of weeks we have seen:
  • Northern Cardinal
  • Blue Jay
  • Spot-breasted Oriole
  • Painted Bunting
  • Red-bellied Woodpecker
  • Savannah Sparrow
  • House Sparrow
  • Palm Warbler
  • Boat-tailed Grackle
Red-Bellied Woodpecker
Northern Cardinal
Painted Bunting
Spot Breasted Oriole
Blue Jay
Boat-tailed Grackle
Palm Warbler
House sparrow
Savannah sparrow

For those of you who travel keeping alert to the countryside there are quite a few places for bird-watching both formal and informal NAUTICAL LOG is an informal watcher:
  • Apalachicola National Forest
  • St. George Island State Park
  • St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge
  • Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park
  • Ocala National Forest
  • Lake Apopke Restoration Area
  • Honeymoon Island State Park
  • Caladesi Island State Park
  • Fort De Soto Park
  • Oscar Scherer State Park
  • Myakka River State Park
  • Lake Kissimmee State Park
  • Three Lakes Management Area
  • Kissimmee Prairie Preserve State Park
  • J.N."Ding" Darling National Wildlife Refuge
  • Stormwater Treatment Area 5
  • Arthur R. Marshall Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge
  • Big Cypress National Preserve
  • Corkscrew Swamp Sactuary
  • Everglades National Park
  • Dry Tortugas National Park

That should keep you busy!!

Good Watch

While we enjoy these birds let us not forget that 400 of our fellow seafarers are held captive by pirates both ashore and off the coast of Somalia. 


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The older vessels saw unbelievable service and value for money the first being commissioned in 1979 and continued through the '80's and 90's into the 21st. Century.  During those years in addition to patrolling the stormy seas around the rugged Irish coast they made passages across the Western Ocean to the United States and Canada, south to South America as far as Argentina, and east to Asia as far as Korea.  Such passages are really remarkable for such small vessels and show the competence of Irish seafarers who as Naval Officers and Merchant Marine Officers train together.

Good Watch.