Posted on Leave a comment

The Water Birds of East Africa

The Water Birds of East Africa

Birding is one among the fastest growing hobbies within the world. In America, bird watchers rose from 21 m in 1982, to an astonishing 68 million in 2000. In the US, birding is now the second hottest outdoor recreation after gardening. Technology advances have made this hobby more fun and appealing. it’s now easier with powerful binoculars and other equipment to look at birds from a distance. And Global Positioning Systems have improved navigation in unfamiliar places. Parents also are ready to amuse their youngsters by luring birds from the bush with recordings of bird songs.

Africa may be a storehouse for birding. The continent has over 2,050 bird species recorded, two thirds of which are found nowhere else. East Africa, especially , has a tremendous sort of birds, perhaps thanks to a light climate barren of extremes. The region has 4 of the highest Ten Birding Sites in Africa as rated by the African Bird Club (www.africanbirdclub.org) -an world organization dedicated to the study of Africa’s birds. These sites are: Bwindi Impenetrable Forest (Uganda), Bale Mountains (Ethiopia), the valley Lakes (Kenya) and Murchison Falls Park (Uganda).

East Africa’s birds are scattered altogether kinds of habitats: mountain forest, lowland forest, seacoast, deserts, savannah, lakes, marsh, swamps and mudflats. during this article, we shall check out the region’s water birds. This category refers to those birds that depend directly on water for food, habitat and breeding or indirectly for a particular component of their life cycle. Most water birds linger along the shallow shoreline of lakes, temporary waters within the inland ecosystems and rivers and really few venture distant from shore. Water birds delight birders, being easier to identify and photograph, as they have a tendency to be larger and live more within the open.

Flamingo’s, on account of their size and large numbers rank as East Africa’s foremost water birds. Out of a world population of about 4 million, an estimated 95 % reside in East Africa . Flamingos are found only in saline water, and East Africa’s valley lakes are their favourite habitat, particularly Manyara and Natron in Tanzania and Nakuru and Baringo in Kenya. Small populations also are found in Lake Abiata in Ethiopia and at the Etosha Pans of Namibia.

The flamingo is extremely biologically unique among wildlife species. it’s highly gregarious and lives in large groups. In Kenya’s valley Lakes, up to at least one million birds are known to gather- forming the most important bird flocks anywhere. The birds are characterised by pink plumage, which is particularly thick on the underside of the feathers and is gracefully exposed during flight. Young flamingos are however more grey than pink – they turn full pink at sexual maturity. you’re then likely to ascertain them in courtship displays that appear as if mock fights.

Flamingos’ beaks are S shaped and pink in colour, while the legs are straight and webbed to facilitate wading in water. They prey on microscopic blue chlorophyte plants that only thrive in saline waters. These plants are suspended in water and to extract a meal they swallow large volumes of water, which is filtered by the beak through specialised anatomical devices. For this reason, flamingos are said to be filter feeders, a standing they share with variety of other aquatic animals.

Lake Natron on the Kenya-Tanzania border is that the principal tract of East Africa’s flamingos. Scientists don’t know needless to say why they do not breed within the other alkaline lakes. But research indicates that Natron is favoured on account of its ecological stability and minimal human disturbance. By reason of its remoteness in location, it’s recorded little change in soil chemistry – a critical think about nest formation.

At Lake Natron, incubation of eggs takes about 3 weeks, after which the mothers fly back to their preferred habitat, mostly Nakuru, Baringo and Manyara. a few week later, the hatchlings usually follow their mothers northwards.

There are two sorts of flamingos, the greater and lesser flamingos. The casual observer could also be unable to inform them apart. But the greater flamingo is considerably larger and features a whiter plumage. the bulk of flamingos in East Africa are of the lesser species. The greater flamingos prey on invertebrates like molluscs and crustaceans. this is often the ecological factor which will largely explain their smaller numbers in reference to lesser flamingos, which are primary consumers within the organic phenomenon .

The pelican is that the other bird likely to be found in large aggregations in East Africa’s wetlands. These are large, stout birds with Pieris brassicae beaks specially adapted for catching and swallowing fish. Most water lakes in East Africa are generously stocked pelicans. you’ll see them swimming most gently and graciously as they look for fish, their primary food. They habitually swim during a team of three and offer a spectacular show as they dive for fish rhythmically and simultaneously.

Though a saltwater lake, pelicans teem in Lake Nakuru, where over 44,000 are recorded. they’re a stunning sight to behold as they spiral upwards in huge columns. In Kenya they only breed at Lake Elementaita. Pelicans are found in plenty round river mouths hosting high fish populations. Other popular sites to ascertain them in East Africa include Kazinga Channel in Uganda and Lake Victoria .

Cormorants are a bird species closely related to pelicans. Of these, the foremost common type is that the greater cormorant. Cormorants are mostly grey and black and are usually slightly smaller and fewer gregarious than pelicans. They favour lakeshores well sheltered by vegetation; they prey on fish and other aquatic invertebrates and breed in trees accessible . For this reason, cormorants are less easy to sight than pelicans.

Cormorants are observed swimming under water in pursuit of fish. After making a catch, they emerge from water and resume their lofty positions on the banks. you’ll see them at East Africa’s inland waters, and particularly Kenya’s valley lakes.

Herons and storks constitute an outsized category of water birds. Herons are tall slim birds with long forward pointing necks and elongated stout beaks. There are about 10 species of herons in East Africa , the foremost commonly sighted being the Goliath heron, the Grey heron and Black-headed heron. The Goliath heron, because the name suggests, may be a huge bird which will attain an overall length of 5 feet.

With few exceptions, herons are mostly sighted around marshes and shallow waters, but also can be seen around inland grassy habitats. Their favourite menu includes snakes and other small vertebrates that sleep in wet areas. one among the herons -the Green-backed heron is noted for its use of the advanced technique of baiting fish with live insect. Herons are quite common throughout East Africa .

The shape of the beak distinguishes storks, and from this feature they derive their name. With about 10 species around East Africa , only the marabou and therefore the Ciconia ciconia aren’t directly water dependent. Marabou storks are very large and in contrast to the opposite storks fly with head and neck retracted. This bird is sort of common within the urban areas where it feeds on refuse and carrions, and hence its dirty reputation.

Marabou storks also are common around water shores where they aim fish and other small and young animals especially the weak and injured. they’re thus happiest in areas with high populations of other birds, like flamingos. Another unique stork is that the Saddle-billed stork, easily noticeable thanks to its red beak with a black patch at the center and yellow base. This stork is sort of common in shallow waters and swampy areas.

The Hamerkop may be a popular medium size bird related to storks. Its name springs from the Afrikaans word for hammerhead, the form formed by its head and beak. they’re common everywhere East Africa’s wetlands. it’s uniquely popular among bird watchers on account of its massive nests. Built with many dry vegetation, the nests average a depth of 1.5 m, and may take upto 6 weeks to finish .

Undaunted by the labour of putting up the ostentatious nest, hamerkops continue to create as many as 6 nests during a territory. The mystery is that they occupy only one! This apparently irrational behaviour isn’t lost to other birds; Egyptian geese and Verraux eagle owls frequently take over a number of the nests. Thus the old saying that you simply cannot tell a bird’s size from its nest rings most true with hamerkops.

The Shoebills and Spoonbills are two other species of water birds that are uniquely identified by their beaks. The shoebill may be a large and dark grey bird that appears almost prehistoric. The bill is formed like – you guessed it- a shoe. it’s often found in large swamps but isn’t easily sighted.

The spoonbill derives its name from the form of its beak, whose posterior part enlarges into a “spoon”. the foremost common type is that the African spoonbill, which is well distributed in East Africa especially round the shallow ranges of huge water bodies and swamps. because it wades in shallow water, it uses the sensitive inner bill surface to sense food- usually fish, frogs and snails.

In the East African wetlands, you’re definitely sure to encounter one or two species of ibises. they need narrow beaks of just about uniform thickness that curve forwards and slightly taper at the top . The Threskiornis aethiopica is that the commonest and typically features a black and white neck and beak. they have a tendency to be gregarious and are mostly found around marshlands and lagoons.

Another common ibis is that the hadada ibis. it’s usually grey and features a glossy patch on each side of wing coverts. They stand out on the idea of the loud distinctive calls they create during flight. they’re at their most vocal at dawn and dusk. they’re quite common throughout East Africa around wooded streams, marshes, lagoons and moist grasslands.

The hadada ibis is surrounded by many legends among African communities. it’s often related to long life and witchcraft. Among the Kikuyu of Kenya, an individual of advanced age is claimed to be as old as Kagogo, the vernacular regard to the hadada ibis. Indeed Kenya’s leading writer, Ngugi wa Thiongo has recently published a completely unique titled in Kikuyu Murogi wa Kagogo, literary “The Witch of the Hadada Ibis”. Conceding that this ibis features a rather haunted look, my considered opinion is that this is often not sufficient ground to sustain such a significant charge as witchcraft.

In the wetlands of East Africa , also lives Grus , which is usually called crested crane. Several species exist, but the crested crane -sometimes mentioned because the Uganda crane- is that the commonest . it’s mostly found in tall grasses and cultivated areas, but breeds mainly in wet areas like marshes. Grus is widespread in Uganda’s numerous swamps and estuaries and is indeed the national symbol.

Despite sitting on Uganda’s court of arms, the elegant crested crane is taken into account endangered. In most parts of East Africa , suitable breeding habitats are increasingly being converted to agricultural use and therefore the crane is now confined to only a few areas. additionally , Grus features a most peculiar social behaviour, which in how further jeopardises its long-term survival. Cranes practice true and maybe absolute monogamy. Often, they’re found in pairs and share strong bonds that are never broken, even unto death. When one among a pair dies, the opposite never pairs up again for the remainder of its life.

The African Jacana is another bird that has unique social and mating behaviour. it’s one among only a few within the Animalia that exhibit “reverse polygamy”, -technically referred to as polyandry, where females date and mate with multiple males. Under this practice females are always busy. the feminine starts off mating with one male, which it leaves incubating the eggs, then shamelessly hops off for an encounter with another male then on and on.

The way the African Jacana brings forth young ones is very specialised and rather shocking from the attitude of humans. it’s easily recognisable by its purple-brown plumage and yellow chest. you’ll find it in wetlands especially shallow lakes, ponds and swamps.

The plovers also are related to lakeshores and large swamps. the foremost common types are the blacksmith plover, kittlitz’s plover and spur-winged plover. The blacksmith is known as after its sharp, distinctive extra high “metallic” voice which will remind you of the goings on during a blacksmith shop. this is often usually an alarm call whose pitch is raised when a threat stalks her eggs or chicks. you’ll find many blacksmith and spur-winged plovers at Amboseli.

Geese also are quite common in lakes and ponds throughout East Africa . the foremost common type is that the Egyptian goose. This bird is thoroughly adapted and may even be found in shallow waters in cities. Africa’s largest waterfowl is that the spur-winged goose, which may reach a length of 100 cm. you’ll sight it at the swamps of Amboseli and within the marsh areas of the Maasai Mara in Kenya.

Most people on safari are after the large five- lion, leopard, buffalo, elephant and rhino. But you’ll get more value if you’ll also look out for the birds. Unless you’re a very specialised bird watcher, you’ll get to ascertain the common water birds on a classic wildlife safari, especially in Kenya. As many birds are found outside national parks, real birding enthusiasts choose a custom itinerary amid expert bird guides.

East Africa may be a year round safari destination. The rains come around April- May and November-December. This however doesn’t much affect the travellers’ ability to urge around. Generally the simplest time to travel on safari is over the drier months when the grass is brief and sighting animals is such a lot easier. the height season falls around January to February and July to August. April to June is that the low season and costs for accommodation within the lodges can fall by the maximum amount as 40% compared to the busy season.

On safari, wear light cottons and linen. Warmer clothing is required for the evenings and for your early morning game drive. Some rainwear is advisable between March and June and October and December. you ought to bring along an honest pair of sunglasses. The glare you experience in bright tropical light may be a new and uncomfortable experience for many . you ought to also pack an honest pair of binoculars to bring the birds and other animals closer.

Posted on Leave a comment

History of the Barber Dime

History of the Barber Dime

In 1887, Mint Director James P. Kimball noted in his annual report the “inferiority of our coinage” compared to other advanced nations which in his opinion, the coinage of the U.S. was out of date and will be changed. At the request of Kimball, Senator Justin S. Morill introduced a bill authorizing the Department of the Treasury to revamp coins without first obtaining the permission of Congress, as long because the current design had been in use for a minimum of 25 years. The bill passed on September 26, 1890 and therefore the dime, quarter and fifty-cent piece were targeted for change. the choice of who should redesign the coins eventually fell to his successor, Edward O. Leech.

Ironically, new designs were submitted by Mint engravers throughout the first 1880’s but the sole change that occurred was a replacement nickel designed by Charles E. Barber in 1883. In 1891, when there was discussion of a public competition for brand spanking new designs. Barber reported to Mint director Kimball that there was nobody within the country capable in assisting him in preparing original designs. Augustus Saint-Gaudens confided to Kimball there have been only four men within the world competent do to such a redesign: three were in France and he was the fourth. It didn’t matter. Kimball insisted that instead of going abroad to seek out the simplest design talent available, it might be possible to seek out able designers in America. Against the recommendation of Barber, the Department of the Treasury organized a contest to supply new designs. A panel of 10 of the leading artist and sculptors of the day were commissioned to guage which might be the simplest designs for brand spanking new coinage. The panel met and rather than discussing the competition, they instead rejected the terms of the competition as proposed by Mint officials on the bottom that the preparation time was too short and therefore the compensation woeful. The Mint director rejected the panels’ suggestions and threw the competition bent the general public . The results were disastrous. Of the quite 300 drawings submitted, only two received an mention by a smaller judging panel. it’s interesting to notice that two of the judges were Barber and Saint-Gaudens.

When Leech took over as Mint director, he was cognizant of the issues his predecessor had experienced. so as to urge new designs into production and avoid another disaster of a contest , he simply directed Barber to draw up new designs. this is often what Barber had wanted right along has he felt as Chief Engraver, he, and he alone was liable for coin design.
The result wasn’t much within the way of originality. that might need to await quite another 25 years. What Barber did was to switch the massive head used on the Morgan dollar by adding a cap and cropping Liberty’s hair shorter in back. He then placed his initial B on the truncation of the neck. This was the planning used not only on the dime, but the new quarter and therefore the new fifty-cent piece also .

The reverse didn’t undergo much of an overhaul either because it uses almost the precise same reverse of its predecessor, the Seated Liberty Dime. While many don’t credit Barber with much artistic ability, what he lacked in design capabilities he made up for in knowledge with regard to designing a coin that might withstand a contemporary high-speed coin press. On January 2, 1892, the primary of over half a billion Barber dimes were struck.

Collectibility
General

The Barber dime series consists of 74 regular issues, plus the super-rare 1894-S. While half a billion dimes for a whole series pales as compared to today’s coin production, it had been big numbers back within the 1800’s. With a coffee relief, Barber dimes faired well and although there are a couple of semi-key issues (not including 1894-s), a whole set in circulated condition are often assembled for under $1500.00 in G4 approximately condition. As is common with many series of this point period, Philadelphia was the most producer of coinage. The San Francisco and New Orleans mint typically produced far few examples in most years of production making earlier years harder to get . Denver didn’t begin producing Barber dimes until 1906.

Key/Semi Key Dates

While most Barber Dimes are obtainable, one among the rarest of all coins came from this series. The 1894-S dime had a complete mintage of 24 and only 10 can now be accounted that presents one among the good numismatic mysteries of the time. Allegedly, 24 pieces were struck at the order of San Francisco Mint Superintendent J. Daggett. Of the ten known, all were struck from an equivalent set of dies. the simplest known story is that Daggett gave three to his daughter Hallie and told her to stay them until she was as old as he was, once they would be worth tons of cash . On her way home from the mint, her newfound riches got the simplest of her and she or he spent one among the dimes on a dish of frozen dessert . Today that coin is understood because the frozen dessert specimen. Although there’s no to prove it had been the one that a young Hallie spent, one among the known specimens is heavily circulated. it’s been graded as a G4 while all other coins are MS/PR60+ condition. Robert Freidberg bought this coin over the counter for $2.40 (24 times face value) at Gimbels emporium , NY, in 1957. If it’s the “Ice Cream Specimen”, it certainly got around.
Why did the mint only produce 24 dimes that year? There are two stories. the primary is that the coins were struck to supply a balance of forty cents needed to shut a bullion account at the San Francisco Mint by June 30, 1894 – the top of the financial year . Since any even numbered (2, 4, 6, 8) dollar amount ending in forty cents was acceptable, the workers were said to possess struck 24 pieces, or $2.40. The expectation was that the Mint would receive orders for more dimes before the top of the civil year . New Year’s Eve passed without an invitation for further production. consistent with the story, two or three pieces were obtained by Mint employees “just to possess a replacement dime,” and once they realized the coins were now rare, they sold them to collectors for $25 or more apiece. The remaining 1894-S dimes went into a bag with other dimes and into circulation. The more widely accept story is that the dimes were minted as a special request for a few visiting bankers. consistent with an account from California dealer Earl Parker, who bought the 2 remaining dimes that Hallie Daggett had, Hallie told Parker that her father minted the coins and presented 3 to every of the 7 visitors and gave the remaining three to her which has previously mentioned, she spent one dime on frozen dessert .

Most experts believe the “visiting bankers” theory because the likely reason. Of the known high grade coins, all of them seem to be proof strikes. it’s unlikely that such care would have taken place to supply a couple of dimes to even out the books but it quite likely for coins made for presentation.
Putting the 1894-S aside, most, if not all dimes are readily available in low grades. Collecting the series in higher grades remains achievable but certainly tougher . Recall that this coin was heavily circulated. Assembling a collecting of all MS65 or better, while little question out of the financial reach of most collectors, is feasible , as there’s a minimum of 1 coin graded in MS65 by PCGS for every mint and year. For the remainder folks , collecting this series in average circulated grades is without a doubt doable. Back during the times of this coin, a dime was real money and intrinsically , this series is heavily circulated. While many dates had mintages within the millions, there are a couple of dates where the entire mintage is around 500,000 thereby making the acquisition of those a touch tougher and painful to the wallet/purse. for instance , the 1895-O had a mintage of 440,000. Obtaining this coin during a grade of G to VG could cost you between $400-$600. It only gets worse from there as an XF-40 will cost you over $2000. The 1901-S had a mintage of 593,022 and isn’t quite as expensive and may be had for fewer than $100 in G condition and for around $500 in XF-40 condition. The 1903-S had a mintage of 613,300 and is analogous priced on lower grades but is higher priced than the 1901-S in higher grades suggesting the 1903-S didn’t fair also in circulation. The second lowest mintage dime was the 1913-S with a mintage of 510,000. While having the second lowest mintage, it’s not within the top 10 as far as price and may be had for around $20 in G4 and $35 for VG8. Earlier coins, even those with mintages over 1,000,000 pieces, will cost you quite the 1913-S suggesting that earlier dates, even those with high mintages could also be tough to accumulate .

If the value of a whole set is just too much, a year set could convince be a way more frugal approach. As mentioned earlier, the Philadelphia mint generally produced the bulk of Barber dimes. the sole year that a branch-mint exceeded production of Philadelphia was in 1895 when Philadelphia produced only 690,880 pieces while San Francisco produced 1,120,000. With the expectation of a couple of earlier dates, most Philadelphia examples are often obtained for a couple of dollars in G4 and for fewer than $10.00 per coin in F to VF condition.

If you’re into collecting Barber type coins, the Barber dime could also be just the ticket for the budget conscience collector.

Errors
The Barber dime series consists two major varieties (1893/2-P and 1905-O micro-O).

Proofs
There are 24 coins within the proof Barber dime series, not counting the branch mint proof 1894-S. The mintages range from 425 for the 1914 to 1,245 for the first-year-of-issue 1892. A grand total of 17,353 proof coins were produced for the entire series. While extremely low, the rarest of proofs in MS-65 is that the 1908 with 12 pieces certified at PCGS.

Vital Statistics Summary
Key Coin Info
Designed by: Charles E. Barber
Issue dates: 1892-1916
Composition: 0.900 part silver, 0.100 part copper
Diameter: 17.9 mm.
Weight: 38.58 grains
Edge: Reeded
Business strike mintage: 504,317,075
Proof mintage: 17,353

Posted on Leave a comment

Clark Air Base – the home to manufacturers of the Worlds

Clark air station – the house to manufacturers of the Worlds Best Handmade Wooden Model Airplanes

Very few people realize the origin of these beautiful shiny and finely detailed aircraft models that they see in travel agents, airports and within the homes and offices of these involved , or crazy with, the Aviation Industry. Without eager to sound condescending, only a few people – particularly of the young generation would be ready to stick a pin within the map and point to the Philippines, including Clark air station .

Clark air station was a former U.S. Air Force base on one among the three main islands within the Philippines – Luzon and is now referred to as the Clark Special Economic Zone. it’s near the town of Angeles within the province of Pampanga and about 40 miles (60 km) northwest of Manila. Clark air station was arguably the foremost urbanized military facility in history, and was the most important American base overseas. the bottom was converted into a special economic zone after the American military left the Philippines in 1992. Clark air station was an American military facility from 1903 to 1991. the bottom covered 14.3 square miles (37 km²) with a military reservation extending north that covered another 230 square miles (596 km²). At its peak around 1990, it had a permanent population of 15,000. the bottom was a stronghold of yank forces during the top of war II, and until 1975, it had been a backbone of logistical support during the Vietnam War .

During the American occupation the military aviation activities gave birth to an area “cottage industry” which rapidly developed to cater for the local then international demand for hand carved wooden replica aircraft. The abundant and sustainable source of Philippine Mahogany – a hardwood ideal for its stability and simple carving, along side the highly artistic capabilities of the Filipino workforce gave birth to what’s today the worlds largest producer of custom handmade desktop wooden models

Many people upon viewing such model airplanes aren’t aware that they’re produced by hand and not mass made on machinery. the eye to detail is beyond comparison and even the littlest of logos are hand painted within the finest of detail. Many manufacturers like better to use hand painted logos in preference to “decals” because the latter have a bent to discolor (or discolor the paint underneath the decal) over age and also detract from the originality of the model. “Decals” are scanned images that are printed on film then attached by an adhesive film the body of the model. Naturally there’s competition today within the sort of plastic, resin or die cast desktop plane models but most discerning buyers and collectors will confirm that the design and feel of truly handmade model airplanes can’t be reproduced in artificial materials and positively through production . additionally to the assembly of ordinary airline and military aircraft many of the versatile manufacturers also produce “one off” copies of peoples own aircraft or rare aircraft from the past.

The lifetime of a “true aviation work of art” begins with the age old process of hand wood carving which is then followed by several key processes. beat all a model normally takes between 7-10 days to supply . the complete production cycle goes as follows:-

Molding / Carving

Skilled Carvers using only hand tools carve and shape the model. this is often a specialist art, requiring a few years of experience. The wood used is kiln dried Philippine Mahogany (commonly referred to as Lauan or Meranti) and isn’t on the endangered list as are many other woods like Philippine Teak (Tectona Philippinensis) or Narra (Pterocarpus Indicus / Red Sandalwood Tree). Wood carving may be a sort of working wood and during this case by using only hand tools. No power tools are utilized in this process. The Carvers work from actual aircraft drawing ensuring that the ultimate carved body is a particular scale replica of the first aircraft.

Puttying / Varnishing

Once the model has been carved, several coats of putty are applied to make a really smooth, flawless finish before painting. Varnish may be a finish applied to the wood so as to supply a transparent , hard, durable, protective finish. The varnish is typically a mixture of a animal oil , a resin and a thinner or solvent. As against paint, which contains pigment, and is opaque, varnish has little or no color, and is transparent. After being applied the varnish hardens either by evaporation of a solvent, or by a reaction . Oil varnish drying time depends on the ratios of oil to resin and turpentine and should be sped up by exposure to UV light.

Artwork

Color schemes are applied by hand or air brush, following the small print or pictures supplied. to make sure the simplest color match to the particular aircraft we are modeling we normally use a Pantone color reference which is provided by the customer or the first aircraft manufacturer. The paint may be a top quality acrylic type which enables us to offer a really top quality custom finish that you simply would accompany that of a plane or maybe an automobile during a showroom environment. After carefully painting the aircraft body and wings the artist then finely paints the intricate detail of the aircraft within the areas of the control surfaces, doors, windows and cargo hatches, engine cowlings, undercarriage and really importantly the very prominent “tail fin” or empennage of the aircraft. No detail is spared, even the within of the engine cowlings are carefully finished and are complemented by authentic looking, within the case of jet engines, fan blades. Even propellers also are carved out of solid wood and eventually finished by the artist.

If you ever have the chance to seem closely at one among these aircraft models I hope you’ll now have an understanding for the massive number of hours that these craftsmen put into their art. These models are a testament to the creativity and innovation of truth Filipino entrepreneur! Even better, if you ever get the chance to go to the province of Pampanga and especially Angeles City and therefore the former Clark Airbase I can guarantee you that you simply are certain a true treat. Kapampangan’s are documented for his or her warm hospitality and that they also make a number of the simplest food within the country!

Stop by and say hi to us!

Posted on Leave a comment

Bird watching; A Free And Fascinating Pastime For All

Bird watching; A Free and interesting Pastime For All

My first experience of deliberate birdwatching happened in Richmond Great Park. The time; 1966, the occasion; one among the primary dates with my (now) husband. There i used to be , all dressed up and prepared to knock him out with my kick the bucket gorgeousness (memory plays strange tricks as you get older!) and there he was, luring me into the undergrowth of the park, hissing to me to stay my head down. No, it wasn’t this bird’s feathers he was after observing, but a Picus viridis that he had spotted. It must are love on my part because, although i do not remember seeing the flash of emerald, I do remember getting my trendy high boots covered in mud.

And that was the primary of the many times that I even have shared the thrill of avian observation with my spouse. He had been a committed twitcher from an early age. As a boy, a family friend had dragged him along to several birdwatching expeditions, from sighting an outsized wader (a ruff) on a 1 time farm , soon to become the fifth terminal at Heathrow, to happy weekends spent observing the various migrants arriving on the Norfolk coast from Europe.

Birdwatching is one nature pursuit that almost anybody can get something out of, and most folks have ‘twitched’ at a while in our lives. What child hasn’t fed the ducks, or pigeons? that is the good thing about birds. they’re so accessible. you’ll see them almost everywhere at any time of the day. And you’ll hear them; blackbirds and nightingales are immortalised in song and verse. the ever present gull are often heard far inland; pigeons coo vociferously in our city centres; rooks squawk as they reach their evening roosts and starlings chatter as they take in flocks on our roofs, telegraph wires and concrete trees. No other wild biological group is very easy to ascertain and admire. The skill of flying, and thus the power to urge out of the way if needs must, has been a boon for the latent birdwatcher altogether folks .

That birdwatching foray with my husband to be was the primary of the many enjoyable observations of our feathered friends. Some i will be able to always remember . Standing on top of the Preseli hills in Wales and taking note of the liquid bubbling coming from the throats of many curlews within the gathering dusk of the evening; sadly not a standard occurrence nowadays. Or that magic afternoon, cycling along a rustic road with my young son and counting 32 larks as they rose skywards from the fields either side folks . Another sight, rarer now than it wont to be, was the spectacle of thousands of starlings darkening the sky and turning together with a whoosh of wings, above the sector next to our first home; We’ve watched puffins and guillemots on Skomer island off the coast of West Wales and along the seashore we’ve seen countless flocks of all kinds of waders. and the way to explain the joys of seeing two peregrine falcons screeching over a deceased pigeon that they were devouring at the bottom of a sea cliff; or watching red kites circling lazily within the thermals above the hills of mid Wales.

And there are always more. I’m so glad I’ve seen a minimum of one dipper, incongruously running along a stream bed, underwater feeding. Another stream frequenter, the heron, also can be sighted, perched in prehistoric stance, within the middle of a field. what’s it doing? i’m assured by that fount of all bird knowledge (my husband) that it’s on the lookout for a tasty mole; and sometimes, if we went out on a Summer night, we might be lucky enough to catch sight of a touch owl, staring down at us from his high perch on a telephone pole .

We called one among our homes Hafod Y Wennol, Welsh for summer house of the swallows, because, in it’s previous life as a cow parlour, the swallows had swooped in and made their little mud nests on it’s walls. We felt so guilty at evicting them from their home, especially after such an extended and threatening journey from their Winter habitat somewhere in Africa. But swallow poo is prolific and to not be tolerated indoors; and that they did have a garage and another barn to breed in. for several years they were a big a part of our summer; the sighting of the primary arrival was always noted. Their twittering and swooping around the farmyard a never ending source of enjoyment; their gathering on the phonephone wire and subsequent departure a dark time, heralding because it did the approaching winter.

And at our next home, a tall Edwardian row house , we had the amazing luck to be the Summer residence to a flock of swifts, whose ariel acrobatics, as they screamed past our windows, would have put the Red Devils to shame. We never uninterested in watching as they swooped and dived after insects, banking at the last second when it seemed they need to hit the house wall. it had been better than television!

We have been lucky enough to measure during a beautiful a part of the country where birdlife is prolific and constant. But town dwellers have opportunities too. In any urban garden a good sort of town birds are often seen; especially with a touch little bit of encouragement. Introduce a nut feeder and a bird table and, abracadabra, in an amazingly short space of your time there’ll be blue tits, robins, blackbirds, sparrows and various finches; if you’re lucky there could be the odd nuthatch. the small wren might hop about underneath, learning any titbits and, if, all of them suddenly scatter for no apparent reason, search to the skies and look for the form of a sparrowhawk, on the lookout for an unwary prey.

Yes, bird watching are some things that you simply can do during your life; from a window or outdoors. Introduce your children to the present fascinating world and that they will have a pleasure which will last and last; it’s free entertainment and a superb grounding in learning the way to appreciate a number of the wonderful world around us.

Posted on Leave a comment

Automatic machine embroidery

Automatic machine embroidery

General information

Machine embroidery may be a special sort of embroidery, performed by special automatic machines, functioning consistent with the man’s adjusted program.
This man is designer, constructor. He creates the embroidery program (design) – the computer operation algorithm, which may be in consequence repeated unlimited number of times. The machine following the given program, automatically executes the embroidery on material. during this way, the most features of machine embroidery are the absence of manual labour at the stage of outright embroidery, and therefore the possibility of embroidery samples duplication. The machine embroidery may be a recent quite activity, in contrast to manual embroidery, existing for thousands of years. The machine embroidery began its existence nearly 50 years ago and in 1980-ies the demand of the profession of machine embroidery designer began to grow. Nowadays the demand is really also . During the amount of machine embroidery existence, its creation technology has changed beyond recognition. The machines that when used as source of data the punch card , limited in speed and quality of embroidery, were replaced by microprocessor-based, highly productive, multihead machines with advanced technology equipment, optimizing the embroidery process.

The process of machine embroidery technologically consists of two closely associated stages:

1. The embroidery designing stage, or the development stage of machine embroidery-represents the method of creation of embroidery machine program. At this stage are developed the development components of machine embroidery.
2. The technical stage represents the direct embroidery manufacture by means of machine. At this stage are developed the technical components of machine embroidery.

Both this stages are at an equivalent time quite independent from the purpose of view of manufacture, which helps to differentiate them and to mark off two different basic sorts of industrial activity accordingly. it’s an issue of enterprises that are specialized directly in program creation, or in materially embroidery creation. Each of those manufacture branches develops round itself a branching infrastructure system. for instance , nowadays there are an excellent number of producers of special program maintenance for machine embroidery, of embroidery machines and special concomitant equipment producers, of outlay materials producers, used for embroidery manufacture. Many companies, in accordance with machine embroidery branch needs are adjusting the directions of its activity. for instance , the producers of textile dye stuff make special adjustments of qualities and spectrum, the clothing producers change the development , adjusting it to the technology of machine embroidery manufacture.

Field of machine embroidery use

Historically the embroidery had, first of all, an ornamental character. Nowadays this essential property favorable affected its use in advertising branch. we often see the embroidery bearing advertising-informational character, on clothing objects and other ready-made garments.

Machine embroidery as advertising –informational bearer

Embroidery are often an efficient advertising-informational means, at an equivalent time without loosing its artistic expressiveness. it’s frequently used at trade marks plotting on the material , leather, felt, also as on complete products, clothes etc. At embroidery it’s possible the reproduction of trade mark of all color combination. The trade mark, plotted on by this method, frequently turns into fashionable attribute of article and becomes an organic element of its composition. it’s possible to embroider on differing types of garments , including uniform, working clothes. The embroidery as characteristic index to any current of activity is widely utilized in many countries. fairly often the firm workers bear the differential sign of their company. It are often a logotype on the top gear, on the front side of the sweater or on the rear side of the jacket.
The cloth embroidery, on many indexes passes before its “rivals”, like serigraphy or decal decoration (transfer seal). The embroidery is more lasting, the stableness of threads color is higher, the volumetric texture of embroidery confers costlier and spectacular shape to the logotype. that’s why most of the firms, handling advertising campaigns development, recommend to their clients the very embroidery. The embroidery are often performed on different parts of garments and on different articles. On head gears (caps, knitted caps), sport shirts, shirts, tolstovkas, even on footwear.

Technical constituent of machine embroidery

During the cycle of machine embroidery manufacturing is applied different means and tools. However, ranging from the supply of two basic stages of manufacture, it are often market two fundamental corresponding tools of machine embroidery. They are:

1. the pc with appropriate program maintenance and peripherals on the development stage of manufacture.
2. Automatic embroidery machine with concomitant supplementary equipment on the technological stage of manufacture.

Let us list the elemental information of commercial automatic embroidery machines and a few supplementary special concomitant equipment.
Industrial automatic embroidery machines consistent with fulfilled activity and principle of operation are often divided in two groups:
1. Universal automatic embroidery machines.
2. Special automatic embroidery machines.

To special automatic embroidery machines are often attributed the machines using almost standard embroidery methods, machines that are ready to perform embroidery on out-of-the-way places of complete products and on materials that are difficult for embroidery. to at least one of the foremost commonly used sort of special automatic embroidery machines are often attributed the so called Schiffli, machines that allow making embroidery with the use of decorative cord, to chop through material and at an equivalent time to process the cut by embroidery. These machines are mostly used for finishing of sunshine and thin, translucent, fashioned and other smart cloth and articles made out of it. as an example , Schiffli machines are often used at wedding dresses decoration.
Quite recently it appeared a replacement interesting quite automatic special embroidery-the so called no-thread-embroidery and automatic no-thread embroidery machines. The principle of operation of such machines features a remote conformity with principle of manufacturing of needle-punched fabrics. It consists within the incontrovertible fact that the machine with a group of needles (24 needles) runs through the structure of the most (working) material the locks of fibers of special auxiliary material. The auxiliary material is laid under the most material. After the auxiliary material removing on the most material remains an efficient , specific pattern (picture).
Nowadays the leader in production of no-thread embroidery machines is that the Japan Company Tanaka. In 2001 fashion show in Berlin and Paris were presented impressive collections made with the assistance of no-thread –embroidery on “Vari-O-Matic” machine of this company. To universal automatic embroidery machines are related the machines of lock-stitch with coordinate displaced frame holder which is supposed for manufacture of embroidery with threads on classical and most widespread materials and articles. the utilization of such machines supposes some limitations in properties of used materials and constructions of complete products.
But these limitations are constantly growing narrower thanks to constant modernization and improvement of universal automatic embroidery machines and thanks to use of manifold auxiliary facilities and special devices. All known universal automatic embroidery machines are of lock-stitch sort of machines and therefore the structure of the many parts of the mechanism has many similarities with lock-stitch embroidery machines.
The main parts of single-head universal automatic embroidery machine are column, case, frame holder and head. The case is fixed on column and consists of pole and cantilevered arm. Inside the upper a part of column is installed the stitch mechanism. Inside the case is installed the most shaft mechanism. On the top is disposed a group of needle mechanisms with thread takeup and thread guide mechanisms. the top is in a position to shift from case within the horizontal position, engaging with the most shaft stirring up the needed needle mechanism. this permits the machine to form the shift of the thread color at one embroidery run.
The frame holder mechanism during a position|is ready”> is in a position to shift the frame holder in a horizontal level in four directions from the active needle. The shift is formed in step-type on coordinate consistent with given embroidery program. during this way the machine can make loch-stitches on material of various length and in any given order and direction, executing if needed the shift of working needle with the thread of the definite color. the economic automatic embroidery machines are often both single-headed and with few heads and with corresponding number of necessary working mechanisms. The last are called many headed or multihead automatic embroidery machines.
Under normal conditions of embroidery all the heads and frame holders mechanisms works synchronously.

The basic indexes of commercial embroidery machines

1. Speed of embroidery. it’s expressed through quantity of stitches per minute. The embroidery speed are often adjusted both manually and automatically while embroidering. The optimal embroidery speed of recent machines oscillates between 700-900 stitches per minute. Maximum speed reaches 1200-1400 stitches per minute.

2. Number of working heads. In modern multihead machines the top numbers come to 2-4 heads.

3. the dimensions of working area or the utmost size of used frame. This index cares with possible size of performed embroidery. it’s expressed through correlation of length and width of the working area in millimeters and is regulated for flat and cylindrical frame (used for caps, sleeves, etc). There are spread the correlations 800×600, 500×400 and other-for flat frame; 360×75, 400×350 and other for cylindrical frame.

4. Needle quantity. it’s adequate to the amount of needles on one head. it’s defined by maximal possible number of thread colors used at one run of embroidery. The possible needle number in modern machines is from 1 to 12. the foremost spread are the machines with 9 needles. Other important indexes are the noise and vibration level, the compatibility of machine with different standard embroidery programs, the presence of accessories, error of linear measurements of embroidery elements.

The accessories are often presented through different additional hinged device for automatic let-off of decorative cord or ribbon, broadened control terminal, systems of laser and video navigation of working area, additional laser trimers (device for thread cutting) and other.

The concomitant equipment are often presented through devices of embroidery evaporation, various press equipment for adhesive chevron and braid production, special cloth-cutting machine within the sort of laser cutter-machines, which will automatically cut of or drift on markings on cloth, which is widely used at combined with embroidery applique’works production.

Posted on Leave a comment

Are Your Sports Memorabilia Faux Or..

Are Your Sports Memorabilia Faux Or..

There is an enormous interest in sports memorabilia, and sports-related items include signed commemorative photos, baseballs, footballs, basketballs, pucks and jerseys. A Google search of companies hawking these things comes up with almost 5 million businesses!

Some of the things on offer cost thousands of dollars.

Where there are numerous eager and gullible customers, fraud is certain to seem . A San Diego federal judge who recently sentenced several sports autograph forgers to prison said, “Life, liberty and therefore the pursuit of the national pastime, has been undone”. The prosecution stemmed from an FBI investigation called Operation Bullpen, which closed down knowledgeable criminal organization that forged and sold bogus autographs.

60 search warrants were served, quite 2 dozen people arrested, and a warehouse with 10 million dollars worth of forged merchandise was seized. The ring leaders received 3 years in prison and forfeiture or assets to the IRS. Both current and “vintage” items were involved. Any fan who features a signed souvenir may now want to question its authenticity.

Phil Halpren, the assistant U.S. attorney who worked to prosecute the forgers stated that fraud is so pervasive within the sports memorabilia market that unless you personally see an item being signed by the athlete, odds are greater than one-half that it’s fake. the foremost athletes most well-known the the general public are fashionable forgers, too. Halpren said, “If you’re watching a Mark McGuire signature, it’s alost a guarantee, 99.9 percent it’s a forgery.” Certificates of authenticity are often fabricated even as easily because the collectible item they supposedly validate, so this is often no protection.

Vendors are fighting back in an attempt to take care of the integrity of the market. Disney, which owns ESPN, will begin next year to auction signed sports memorabilia online. Disney says it’ll authenticate the signatures with holograms encrypted with the item’s identifying information and package seals, videotaping the whole process.

Sophisticated forgers can even produce holographic seals which appear, on casual inspection, to be real. However most forgers are amateurs, and therefore the more sophisticated the anti-forgery system, the less likely criminals are to aim to repeat it.

Baseball and football are hottest in America, but a couple of famous hockey players like Gretzky and Orr are popular targets for forgery also .

With all the things available, both off and on the web , fans can avoid tons of fraud by using sense . for instance , a baseball autographed by Ruth selling for $500 is clearly a fake, because such a price is unbelievably low, too low for real market conditons. Also, it pays to understand a touch bit about the event of baseballs and pens. If you see baseballs supposedly signed within the ’20s and ’30s with Sharpie pens, these are obviously fake, because these pens weren’t invented yet therein era. To quote Phil Halpren : “I have seen Ruth balls signed on a Bobby Brown American League President ball. So, you know, he was president within the early ’80s. That’s impossible to possess been done. But someone did it.”

So, while it’s enjoyable to have a bit of sports history, the motto to follow is : buyer beware. Unless you’re knowledgeable trader who knows the way to authenticate merchandise, do not buy an item strictly for its potential resale value, because you’ll be disappointed by what you ultimately get for it. Buy an item you personally like and shall keep, and do not spend thousands of dollars. This ensures that you simply are going to be happy once you check out your purchase, without the lingering doubt that you simply have wasted an outsized sum of cash on something of dubious value.

Posted on Leave a comment

All Coin Dealers Are Not Created Equal

All Coin Dealers aren’t Created Equal

How to Select a Coin Dealer for Your Coin Collection

Why do i want a Coin Dealer?

It is very difficult to create a set of rare coins without a connection to an honest coin dealer. If you’re an investor hoping to form a profit together with your collection of rare coins, building relationships with good coin dealers is significant to your success. If you’re curious about making the very best profits possible together with your coin collection, you’ll got to find a merchant partner who is experienced within the specific rare coins that interest you, and who will sell them to you at an honest price. Most coin dealers will charge a lower premium on the sale of coins to their best customers. After all, it makes good business sense to urge the foremost profit possible from an individual who will do business with you simply once. If you’ve got a long-term relationship, however, the margin doesn’t got to be as high for the coin dealer to form an honest profit.

Because coin dealers are experts in their chosen fields, they’re going to even have better connections than individuals who buy coins on their own will. Finding the proper vendor or wholesaler are often an extended and difficult task for somebody new the numismatics trade. Coin dealers also will be more likely to acknowledge a counterfeit coin, have a better chance of hearing about the sale of the precise rare coins that interest you, and can recognize an selling price that’s over- or undervalued. As an investor, these are all critically details for your success.

Building a long-term relationship with a knowledgeable coin dealer is that the best thanks to protect the cash that you simply invest into rare coins. only too often, new coin collectors who attempt to go it on their own without professional help find yourself being scammed out of hundreds or thousands of dollars.

What Do I search for during a Coin Dealer?

All coin dealers aren’t created equal, and it’s nearly impossible to concentrate on every area when it involves collecting rare coins. Therefore, it is vital to understand what to seem for before you decide on knowledgeable for your numismatics needs.

The first vital piece of data that you’re going to need when considering coin dealers is his or her professional qualifications. Some important inquiries to ask include, does the coin dealer belong to any professional groups? How long has he or she been in business? Can the coin merchant provide references from other satisfied customers? one among the simplest indications that a vendor features a high level of professionalism may be a membership within the Professional Numismatists Guild (PNG). This group includes the foremost reputable coin dealers within the business because of a stress on ethics.

The second most vital question to place to a prospective coin dealer is that the area during which he or she specializes. There are numerous different sorts of rare coins to gather , starting from gold bullion coins to ancient Roman coins, that it’s impossible to be a real expert altogether of them. you’ll be wanting to seek out a merchant that focuses on the actual area that’s of interest to you. A trader could be ready to recognize every rare American coin at a look , but that will not does one tons of excellent if you actually want to gather tender from medieval times.

Finally, you ought to consider the motivation of the coin dealers you’re considering. A highly motivated coin merchant will attend shows and retailer auctions, keep up of current prices and trends, and can generally keep up-to-date with the present coin market. Any investor will recognize the impact of current information on profit levels. A coin trader who is very motivated also will be more likely to supply you with excellent service and therefore the best rare coins.

Once you’ve got selected a coin dealer, it’s important to reward him or her together with your loyalty. you’re likely to urge the simplest prices and repair from coin dealers who know that you simply are working exclusively with them.