CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 2, 2006 |
The albatross chick jumped to its feet, eyes alert and focused. At 5 months, it stood 18 inches tall and was fully feathered except for the fuzz that fringed its head. All attitude, the chick straightened up and clacked its beak at a visitor, then rocked back and dangled webbed feet in the air to cool them in the afternoon breeze. The next afternoon, the chick ignored passersby. The bird was flopped on its belly, its legs splayed awkwardly. Its wings drooped in the hot sun.
August 11, 2002 |
No one seems to know exactly who came up with the name or when it first was used, but they all seem to agree that it fits: gooney. As in gooney bird. More precisely, the Laysan albatross--about 1 million of which call Midway Atoll home. "I suppose that [terminology] was during the military days," said Tim Bodeen, the national wildlife refuge manager at Midway. "I suppose they were kind of gooney." Like thousands of little statues, they dot every acre of the landscape and transport visitors smack into what seems like a scene from Alfred Hitchcock's "The Birds."
July 7, 2002 |
The site of the battle that turned the tide in favor of U.S. forces in the Pacific 60 years ago, Midway Atoll today is a national wildlife refuge. Background: The United States took formal possession of Midway in 1867. The laying of the transpacific cable, which passed through the islands, brought the first residents in 1903. After the Battle of Midway on June 4-6, 1942, the islands served as a naval station until 1993.
March 10, 2002
Tours to Midway Atoll, the former World War II battle site in the Pacific that was opened to eco-tourists, divers, anglers and other visitors in 1996, were suspended after the company that managed the tourist services pulled out. Commercial flights ended in January; charter flights this month have been returning staff home. Georgia-based Midway Phoenix Corp., which managed the site, cited an "unacceptable" relationship with the U.S.
February 1, 2002 |
Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge, site of the infamous World War II battle but more recently a gem of a destination for fishermen, divers and eco-tourists, is no longer accessible to the public. Midway Phoenix Corp., which has managed the airport and tourism services since the remote atoll went public in 1996, said this week that it has decided to end what it calls an "unacceptable" relationship with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and cancel its contract with Aloha Airlines.
August 25, 2000 |
You travel all the way to Midway to escape the rat race, only to find that Midway has been trying to do the same thing for years. Its new caretakers, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, finally succeeded earlier this summer, killing the last rat and ending decades of vermin infestation that wreaked havoc on this remote, mid-Pacific Ocean atoll's incredible seabird population. * You pick up all sorts of interesting tidbits during a seven-day stay here.