Travel Tuesday: Tetrapods

Each of these tetrapods weights about 6 tons. They are used for saving the coasts from heavy surfs and breakers. You’ve already seen them in action in one of my last images taken on Heligoland.

Take care!

 

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Travel Tuesday: Sanderling

Sanderling (Calidris alba)

Take care!

 

Travel Tuesday: water vs land

 

Here, you can see the iconic symbol of Helgoland the “Lange Anna” (tall Anna). This time you can see it from a slightly different perspective. For this image I was nearly on sea level. On the right you can see the start of the concrete wall.

Next Monday, I’ll show you the rock needle from a more common perspective.

Take care!

 

Travel Tuesday: Paparazzi

 

There are photographers around for taking photographs from the private lives of famous people (i.e. politicians, music or film stars and other celebrities) with-out their permission (often out of hides) for selling them to magazine publishing houses called yellow press. Here this kind of photographers is called paparazzi (plural).

When I was on Helgoland recently with my friends, we were kind of paparazzi, too 🙂 Our celebes were the wild living animals: seals and sea-birds.

The seal in the above image isn’t in danger. The line in front of the seal marks the edge of a small air-field and helps, to keep people out of the danger zone. Because seals can’t read, the two runways have to be checked before every use of the runway.  We also kept a distance of at least 30 m from them. Because of the chosen perspective and lens, it looks much shorter.

Take care!

 

Travel Tuesday: I’m back …

Last week I was on Helgoland again. For the third time (after 2011 and 2016), I met with some friends in January on Helgoland.

You could ask, why I travel to the North Sea in mid winter. It’s dark, wet, cold and the sea is rough. Only very few people find their way to Helgoland during winter. In summer, it’s a destination for yachtsmen and day tourists for duty-free shopping. But, in winter?????

We’re going there for seeing nature, animals (birds and seals). The grey seals get their babies during winter. While the first wild grey seal was born in winter 1996/97, there were about 100 babies in 2011. 2016 there were already more than 316 and this year more than 426 babies from October 1st until January, 21st (when we left Helgoland).

The baby in the above image was born only a few hours ago.

Although, these animals look so cute. Keep in mind, they are the most dangerous animal in Germany. A male wights up to 300 kg and is much quicker on the beach than a human. So, many signs advise the visitors to pay much attention and keep a distance of at least 30 m between you and a seal. Winter is not only the season for giving birth, it’s als mating season. So, you can also see some fights between the adults (also there are fewer fights in January, because both, birth and mating season have reached their end).

Fortunately, most of the visitors behave good. But, every time you can see some people behaving very bad: going too close, standing between mother and baby, standing between animal and the see and so on. You got the picture. I guess, one day a seal could attach such a rude and ruthless human and I fear, that animal will be killed because of that. Next, they will be declared as too dangerous, and no-one will be allowed to visit them so easy.

During the 1970 they were completely exterminated in the whole Deutsche Bucht (German Bight). From the late 1980s they re-conquered a sandbank near Amrum. That sandbank became a bridgehead for repopulating the German Bight again. Recently, I saw a report saying there were more than 12,000 grey seals in the German Bight again.

Seals don’t attack humans. As long as you keep the distance, they stay calm. They look at you when you come nearer to check up the situation, but calm down again very easy. When they think, they are in danger, they start to hiss loud and show their teeth. A male might try to come a bit nearer to you (a few steps), but generally they tend to flee instead to attack.

Take care!

P.S. when interested, I could help you to arrange a visit next winter 🙂