Swallows

Signs of autumn appear and last week the swallows (Hirundo albigularis) were gathering, swooping  and wheeling in large flocks, getting ready for their long flight back to the northern hemisphere.

We wish them a safe journey.

“Second star to the right and straight on ’til morning.”  Peter Pan (JM Barrie).

WPC: Wish

Shall We Dance?

The charismatic African penguin - Spheniscus demersus returns from sea_01 African penguins mate for life. African penguins from the Boulders colony live on the urban edge. African penguins shadow dancing.

WPC:  Shadow

The afternoon shadows lengthen as the sun slips towards the horizon and the African penguins return from a day’s fishing.  Stocks of their prey, small pelagic fish such as sardines and anchovies are dwindling in numbers and as a consequence since 2000 the penguin populations off South African have been declining, especially off the heavily fished West Coast.  Give a thought for these charismatic little creatures as they are listed as Endangered on the IUCN’s REd Data List.

Flotsam Art

Ocean pollution is a huge concern worldwide, but head way up to 71*N in the extreme northern hemisphere to the remote village of Honningsvåg, on the island of Magerøya in the North Cape of Norway and meet Erica Haugli through her blog – Experience North Cape and Once Upon a Dream and be aware of  how bad the problem is there. Her campaign “One Step at a Time” to clean up the environment along the coastal stretches in this far flung spot on the map can be read here.
Her idea was to create colourful art collages out the odd shoes, boots and plastic to raise awareness to the mass of flotsam and rubbish deposited by the ocean currents on the once pristine shores.  What an eye-opener to learn that there is so much waste in the ocean so far north.  She achieved her aim and by 2014 her gallery was opened to the public.

Shoe art by Erica Haugli_01

Midnight sun_Erica Haugli

I was fortunate to travel with my husband to these remote parts on a journey aboard ship to see the northern lights and other magnificent wonders.  The day we stopped in Honningsvåg the wind was so ferocious that the trip to the North Cape was cancelled.  Happily we did get to ‘walk’ the village without being blown back out to sea.   Although I never got to meet Erica, as at the time she was down with a bad dose of flu, I was in awe of the hardy inhabitants who live at the edge of this inhospitable but hauntingly beautiful landscape.  Her artwork reflects these local scenes and topics, perhaps you’d like to check her online galleries.

HonningsvagVillage of Honningsvag

Inspired by the Weekly Photo Challenge: Repurpose