Wednesday, 5 December 2012

Whooper Swan 812, you are cleared to land.

Have you ever wondered how Whooper Swans land? Well, all that I can say is that they have been watching the Royal Air Force, as their techniques are incredibly similar. First of all, having selected the desired landing position, they fly down-range to ensure that they approach the landing site into the wind to maximise aerodynamic control. Then, still flying at a great rate of knots they start to lose height until they are just a few feet above the water. Time now to lower the under-carriage.

The next requirement is to lose speed and it is at this point that any resemblance to the RAF goes out of the window and is replaced by brute force and ignorance. The technique adopted is to lose more height and stab a webbed foot into the water which, not surprisingly, throws you a little off balance.


Once balance is restored this technique is repeated until they are eventually running on the water.


The third manoeuvre is one that any footballer would be proud of, a two-footed tackle with studs showing. That'll do the trick.


Some swans seem to make this procedure look effortless and come into land with grace and elegance.


Whilst others however adopt a more cavalier approach, like this one which seems to be shouting

                                  "GET OUT OF THE WAY"



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