Farewelling the Godwits

Every September the Christ Church Cathedral bells peal for 30 minutes to announce the arrival of the Godwits after the 11,000 km non-stop flight from Alaska. They fly back to Alaska in March and the Christchurch City Council rangers and the Avon-Heathcote Estuary Ihutai Trust put on a farewell event at the time of their departure. Of course it’s not their exact time of departure! Perhaps someone should tell the Godwits we’re having a party just for them, and they should now make a big deal about flying off just for all those nature photographers standing by the shoreline with their enormous lenses.ย  (Yes I have lens envy).

The very nonchalant Godwits Oyster Catchers (opps!), hanging about and fairly oblivious to the large crowd of people staring at them doing not much at all!

Now here’s a bit of flying… but they were landing, not taking off ๐Ÿ™‚


  • 8 years ago

    I’m loving your daily photos, and I’m not an ornithologist, but I’m pretty sure those are oystercatchers in your middle photo, not Godwits (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bar-tailed_Godwit)

  • 8 years ago

    What an interesting celebration. Maybe we should do that over here with the annual departure of the Common Koel. Although I don’t think we would celebrate their arrival.

  • 8 years ago

    Love the lens envy … I went to the local camera club meet last month and was enthralled by all the middle-aged men with out-sized lenses.
    I’m sure there’s an interesting psychology at work ๐Ÿ™‚

  • 8 years ago

    i meant to get down for that lured by the free bbq they put on – but at the same time im not big on celebrating the end of summer :s

  • 8 years ago

    I didn’t know of this tradition. I guess you learn something new everyday! It sounds interesting. It’s amazing that those birds travel so far

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