The Biggest Wingspan.

When i was on the SS Uganda sailing to the Falklands in 1982 we were at sea for 2 weeks and on the journey we encountered a wind gust of Gayle force 8, the Horizon would go from view then appear, waves would batter the flat bottomed ship and rock like George McCrae. Sea sickness was bad and i often would go up on deck to get he fresh salt water spray on my pale sick face. 2 weeks at sea was not the best experience i had whilst serving in the army but one thing kept me goung.

There was a bird a large bird with huge wings following the ship about 100 feet away from the rear of the vessel. It never flapped its wings and was like a model being pulled some how by the ship. when I first observed it i knew what it was just by looking at the wingspan. A bird that lives for nearly a half of a century.

Its wingspan is 3.3 metres over 10feet from wing tip to tip. and its a estimated they will spend at least 6 years without landing, covering vast amounts of distance over the ocean.

Image taken by Mr R Blackburn from the SS UGANDA. 1982

It was a wonderful sight everyday climbing the ships stairs to see it the again day after day for 2 weeks. i forgot about adding it my list of birds i have photographed.

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I am 63 years old and and since a boy have had an interest in wildlife and in particular birds. I help my Dad with the rearing of young finches and other birds. I had many small birds as pets and as i got older and joined the Military i purchsed my first Camera, and fold out Kodak. Over a 22 year period i enjoyed many countries outside the uk and observed many species of birds. When i left the military in 2000, i bought my first digital camera a Canon 450D with a Tamron 70-300 and started my journey on capturing images of birds and animals. I quickly learned that there was a lot more to getting a good image of a bird, so i started to research the best settings for my camera in order to capture a better image. Over a 12 month period i realised that needed to invest in a better camera and lens and after research bought a Canon 50D and a 100-400 Lens. It was 2013 when i really got to grips with the setup and came across a lovely Short Eared Owl. From that meeting i started to concentrate on Owls as they fasinated me. From Canon to Olympus i recently jumped ship again to Sony. The variety of birds i have captured over a 10 year period is vast and at present i have a wildlife hide in lancashire where most of my images are captured.

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