Grey heron and big fish, video


This is a video about a grey heron trying to swallow a big fish in the Ypenburg area in The Hague in the Netherlands.

Jan van Wandelen made this video in his backyard on 7 December 2014.

16th century book on fish and whales on the Internet


This Dutch video is about a whale, beached near Antwerp in 1577; as described in Adriaen Coenen’s Visboek about marine animals.

From the National Library of the Netherlands, in The Hague:

Adriaen Coenen’s Visboek

In 1577, at the age of 63, Adriaen Coenensz from Scheveningen, a Dutch fishing port, started his Vis booc. Over a period of three years he collected all kind of information about the sea, the coasts, and coastal waters, fishing grounds and marine animals: 410 pages written by an expert. Throughout his life he had earned his living from the sea, as fisherman, as wreck master of the county of Holland, and from 1574 as official fish auctioneer at Scheveningen.

Digital version of Adriaen Coenen’s Visboek in flash (for newer pc’s)
Digital version of Adriaen Coenen’s Visboek in html (for tablets and older pc’s)

Coenensz made nearly every page into a miniature work of art by framing his texts and illustrations by borders, edges and cartouches painted in water colour. He must have realised the special value of his book, as appears from the minutes of the court sessions in Leiden from 1583. They contain a note indicating that Coenensz asked permission for his book and his collection of dried fish ‘to be shown on the coming free annual fair and the festival of the relief of the city [3 October], receiving from every person five cents and from those wanting to see the book twenty-five’. So looking at his book was five times as much as marvelling at his dried fish. Coenensz certainly cashed in on his knowledge. On the reverse of folium 11 he even promoted it:

‘Whoever reads or studies it
May spread the word to Another
that he may see and hear’.

Beached whale, from Coenensz' book

One of the marvels of the sea that the inhabitants of Leiden could admire in the book was ‘The true Portrait and size of this whale that has been captured on the ij of July AD m.d.lxxvij’, painted in water colour over two pages. Coenensz had drawn this whale after an engraving that had appeared in the same year (1577). Drawing and caption record an event that would also be considered newsworthy in our own time: a whale cast ashore. The whale depicted here landed in shallow waters, the Scheldt near Doel above Antwerp, and attracted a lot of attention. A few years later Coenensz made a second book, based on this manuscript, the whale manuscript, which is now in Antwerp; a third, also with drawings of whales, is part of a collection in Cologne.

Literature

E.Cockx-Indestege, ‘Een walvis gestrand in de Schelde boven Antwerpen op 2 juli 1577′, in: Noordgouw. Cultureel Tijdschrift van de provincie Antwerpen 6 (1966), p. 1-18
K. Barthelmess, ‘Potvisstrandingen in de Lage Landen in de 16de eeuw. Geschiedenis en iconografische ontwikkeling’, in: Op het strand gesmeten. Vijf eeuwen potvisstrandingen aan de Nederlandse kust. [Zutphen] 1992, p. 35-56.

Dutch Islamophobic newspaper ‘news’ turns out to be lies


This video from the USA is called Bush Talks about Crusade on September 16 2001.

Trouw is a Dutch daily newspaper. It was originally founded during the nazi occupation of the Netherlands, as a clandestine anti-occupation voice of Protestant Christians. It has a better reputation than, eg, a daily like De Telegraaf, a rightist paper which during World War II collaborated with the nazis and now has a reputation of xenophobia, sensationalism and being ‘economical with the truth’.

So, when earlier this year, Trouw published a series of articles about the Schilderswijk neighbourhood in The Hague city, these articles looked credible to many people. Most Schilderswijk people are immigrants. The Trouw articles claimed that fanatical Muslims had managed to make the Schilderswijk into a ‘Sharia triangle'; where Dutch laws did not apply any more, and had been replaced by extremely strict Muslim Sharia law rules. Other corporate Dutch news media reproduced this uncritically.

Today, Trouw writes that they now doubt seriously the truthfulness and existence of so-called sources of some of the articles in their paper. These articles are by an editor who has meanwhile been sacked. Trouw refuses to say which articles these are, and what is the name of this (ex-)editor.

There are strong suspicions in the Netherlands that the name of this (ex-)editor is Perdiep Ramesar. And that the untruthful articles are his writings about the so-called ‘Sharia triangle’ in the Schilderswijk. After the ‘Bermuda triangle’ myth, the ‘Sharia triangle’ myth.

So, not just one daily, but big parts of the Dutch corporate media, believe Islamophobic lies. Why? To understand, we have to go back to 2001, when George W Bush and Tony Blair abused the 9/11 atrocities for starting war first in Afghanistan, then in Iraq. Wars based on lies. The wars were not really about religion, more about oil and other economic factors. Still, George W Bush referred to his ‘Global War on Terror’ as a ‘crusade’, giving rise to war propaganda depicting Islam as the enemy.

Recent atrocities by ISIS terrorists in Syria and Iraq, and the re-start of the Iraq war by NATO governments (officially against these atrocities, but, again, more about oil and other economic factors; and in alliance with regimes with links to ISIS, like in Saudi Arabia and Turkey) revived Islamophobia in war propaganda.

In such a climate, the lying Trouw articles contributed to making the immigrant people in The Hague and their Schilderswijk neighbourhood a target of the violent extreme Right. A loose alliance of various Islamophobic extremists, called Pro Patria, tried to march to the Schilderswijk. Then, the Hitler admiring Dutch party Nederlandse Volksunie (a component of the earlier Pro Patria march) tried to march to the Schilderswijk again.

Both the publishing of the earlier lies, and today the secretiveness about the name of the editor and the articles, are not good for the reputation of Trouw. One should hope they won’t be good for the reputation of Islamophobic war propaganda in the Netherlands and elsewhere in general.

Islamophobia at Dutch schools: here.

Short-eared owl, purple sandpipers, black redstart


Feral pigeons, Scheveningen, 18 october 2014

On 18 October 2014, on the southern jetty of Scheveningen harbour, there were more birds than just ruddy turnstones. Like these two feral pigeons at the end of the jetty.

They had been ‘kissing'; unfortunately just before the photo.

We walked back.

Northern wheatear, Scheveningen, 18 October 2014

This migrating northern wheatear standing on a rock.

Short-eared owl, Scheveningen, 18 October 2014

Then, an even more special migratory bird: a short-eared owl passed the jetty!

Short-eared owl, North Sea, Scheveningen, 18 October 2014

Unusual, to see this uncommon bird, a land bird, flying south over the North Sea waves. Two herring gulls harassed it.

Short-eared owls do fly over the sea sometimes: here.

Purple sandpiper, Scheveningen, 18 October 2014

Also, purple sandpipers on the jetty rocks. Some awake.

Purple sandpiper sleeping, Scheveningen, 18 October 2014

And some sleepy. About purple sandpipers: here.

Black redstart, Scheveningen, 18 October 2014

We were back on the continent. Not far from the beginning of the jetty, this black redstart on concrete near a sand dune.

We went to the ‘Vulkaan‘ (the Volcano), a high sand dune south of The Hague. It is a good vantage point for seeing bird migration. The many birdwatchers present saw, eg, song thrushes and mistle thrushes fly past.

Ruddy turnstones, other birds, at Scheveningen harbour


Ruddy turnstones, Scheveningen, 18 October 2014

This photo shows a flock of ruddy turnstones at the southern jetty of the harbour of Scheveningen, The Hague’s port.

Before we arrived there on 18 October 2014, a great cormorant sitting on a pole in the canal.

On a building near the harbour, a kestrel sitting.

Much bird migration today: groups of yellow wagtails, starlings and chaffinches flying past.

On a mast in the harbour, a great black-backed gull.

An oystercatcher flying.

Ruddy turnstone, Scheveningen, 18 October 2014

On the jetty, ruddy turnstones; and a few purple sandpipers.

Ruddy turnstone feeding, Scheveningen, 18 October 2014

A puddle on the jetty. Turnstones; and a rock pipit drinking.

Ruddy turnstone, Scheveningen jetty, 18 October 2014

Stay tuned for more Scheveningen harbour birds.

Ruddy turnstone, on Scheveningen jetty, 18 October 2014

Scheveningen bird photos: here.