Sunday, June 25, 2017

ex-Skytrans Airlines Dash-8-300 VH-QQP (now VH-BBU) Departs Australia via Cairns Airport

Recently, I noted that the Far North Queensland Skies Blog reported that former Skytrans Airlines Dash-8-300 VH-QQP left Australia for good by departing Cairns Airport on Saturday 27 May for Majuro in the Marshall Islands.

As their photo (below) shows, after spending some time in storage still painted in the old-style Skytrans livery, the Dash-8-300 was re-registered as VH-BBU of Air Fleet Management (Queensland).

Of interest, in the days following its departure from Cairns, the Dash-8-300 was noted arriving into Toronto (Pearson) Airport in Canada on completion of its delivery flight (presumably) to a new operator.  It also appears to have taken up a new Canadian registration marking.

Additional photo taken by the FNQ Skies Blog  ©

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Light Jets Australia Cessna 525 Citation CJ1 Bizjet VH-TFW Pops into Biloela / Thangool Airport

On Friday 23 June, Light Jets Australia Cessna 525 Citation CJ1 bizjet VH-TFW was noted arriving at Biloela / Thangool Airport.  It touched down from its Archerfield base.

VH-TFW at Rockhampton Airport  (File photo)

After spending the night, VH-TFW returned to Archerfield on Saturday 24 June.

Meanwhile, also on Saturday 24 June, locally-based Embraer EMB-550 Legacy 500 bizjet N142GZ returned home to Mackay Airport from Townsville.  As mentioned below, N142GZ flew to Townsville from Mackay on Thursday 22 June.

Photo taken by 'IAD'  ©

First Photos of Re-Registered Cessna 208B Caravan VH-IHQ (ex P2-HFD) at Maryborough Airport

David G from Maryborough Aviation Services has sent through what are the first photos of the newly re-registered Cessna 208B Supervan 900 VH-IHQ which was photographed at Maryborough Airport this week.

As we mentioned previously, the Supervan 900 was previous registered P2-HFD of Helifix Operations of Papua New Guinea (PNG) and ferried into Maryborough Airport in December 2016.

File photo

VH-IHQ has been registered in New South Wales and so may soon take up residence down South.

Meanwhile, shown in the background of a couple of these photos is the now Maryborough-based Maryborough-based Israel Aircraft Industries (IAI) 1124A Westwind II bizjet VH-IER.

File photo

File photo

In May we reported that VH-IER was on the move, calling into Bundaberg Airport before departing to the Illawarra Regional Airport at Wollongong for planned maintenance.  Last Saturday 17 June, VH-IER returned to Maryborough, completing its return flight from Wollongong via the Sunshine Coast.

Sincere thanks to David for taking the time to capture and send through these great photos!

All photos taken by David Geck  ©

Hamilton Island Airport Friday - Cessna 525A CitationJet2 Bizjet VH-MOR Arrives and Corporate Aviation Bell 429 Helicopter VH-EQP Departs

On Friday 23 June, Brisbane-based Cessna 525A CitationJet2 bizjet VH-MOR was noted visiting Central Queensland for the second time this week, arriving into Hamilton Island Airport.  It arrived from Archerfield via the Gold Coast.

VH-MOR at Mackay Airport earlier this year  (File photo)

At the time of writing, it seems to be staying for at least the night.

Meanwhile, also on Friday 23 June, Corporate Aviation Bell 429 helicopter VH-EQP departed Hamilton Island Airport for Mackay Airport.  It had arrived on Hamo on Wednesday 21 June.

UPDATE!  VH-EQP returned 'home' to Southport via Gladstone Airport on Sunday 25 June.

Another interesting helicopter in the form of AeroPower McDonnell Douglas Helicopter Company (MDHC) 369E VH-HVO was scheduled to arrive into Mackay Airport from Townsville also on Friday 23 June.

It is believed to be yet another helicopter flying through the region completing power line inspections.

Both choppers seem to be spending the night at Mackay Airport.

Finally, back on bizjets, locally-based Embraer EMB-550 Legacy 500 N142GZ was noted flying from Mackay Airport to Townsville on Thursday 22 June.

Photo taken by 'AC'  ©

Bishopp Aviation (Brisbane) SOCATA TBM-700 VH-VSV Photographed at Mackay Airport

During this week, Brisbane-based Bishopp Aviation SOCATA TBM-700 VH-VSV was back in Central Queensland, popping into a couple of local Airports.  It initially arrived into Rockhampton Airport from its Archerfield base on Wednesday 21 June before heading North to Mackay Airport later in the day.

While on the ground at Mackay Airport, one of the local plane spotters capture these great photos, giving a nice study of the French-built turboprop.

Of interest, VH-VSV is powered by Pratt & Whitney PT6A-64 turboprop engine.

On Thursday 22 June, VH-VSV departed Mackay Airport for Townsville.  It finished the week on Friday 23 June by continuing North to Cairns before it later returned to Archerfield.

Sincere thanks to the local plane spotters for their help with this post!

All photos taken by 'AC'  ©

Friday, June 23, 2017

Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) Boeing C-17A Globemaster III Aircraft A41-210 & A41-212 Pop into Rockhampton Airport

On Friday 23 June, Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) Boeing C-17A Globemaster III A41-210 arrived into Rockhampton Airport touching down from RAAF Base Amberley as "Stallion 32".

It looked to unload some cargo loading equipment which no doubt suggests that more military transport aircraft are expected into Rockhampton Airport in the days before/after and during the upcoming Military Exercise Talisman Sabre 2017 (TS17).

After a short period of the time on the ground, A41-210 departed Rockhampton Airport and returned to Amberley.


Then, just before this post was written, later on Friday 23 June, fellow RAAF C-17A Globemaster III A41-212 touched down at Rockhampton Airport also from Amberley - interestingly it was heard to use the same radio callsign of "Stallion 32".

After unloading more equipment and other cargo, A41-212 returned to Amberley.

Stay tuned to the CQ Plane Spotting Blog for all the latest news and aircraft and helicopter movements associated with Exercise Talisman Sabre 2017 (TS17).  

Exercise Talisman Sabre is a major Australian and United States military training exercise focused on the planning and conduct of mid-intensity “high end” warfighting. 2017 will be the seventh time the Exercise has been conducted and will involve over 30,000 Australian and US defence personnel.

TS17 will incorporate force preparation activities, Special Forces activities, amphibious landings, parachuting, land force manoeuvre, urban operations, air operations, maritime operations and the coordinated firing of live ammunition and explosive ordnance from small arms, artillery, naval vessels and aircraft.

TS17 is scheduled to take place from late June through to late July 2017. Exercise activities in Shoalwater Bay Training Area will commence from early July.

The Rockhampton Regional Council has also this week announced that the Exercise Talisman Sabre 2017 Open Day will be held on Saturday 8 July at the Rockhampton Showgrounds.  See more about the Open Day here:

Sincere thanks to local plane spotters Daniel B and Scott H for taking the time to capture and send through these great photos!

Photos and video taken by Scott Harris and Daniel Bishop  ©

Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) B737 Wedgetail A30-001 Missed Approach at Bundaberg Airport

On Friday 23 June, Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) Boeing B737-7ES / E-7A Wedgetail Airborne Early Warning & Control (AEW&C) aircraft A30-001 "Mitchel 13" was noted completing a missed approach at Bundaberg Airport.

A30-001 completes a missed approach at Rockhampton  (File photo)

It seemed to fly up from the South and was seen completing a missed approach at Bundaberg Airport before it was believed to have returned to the South.

Photo taken by 'IAD'  ©

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Trump Aviation / Australian Corporate Jet Centres Cessna 560 Citation Ultra Bizjet VH-WFE Arrives at Biloela / Thangool Airport

On Thursday 22 June, Trump Aviation / Australian Corporate Jet Centres Cessna 560 Citation Ultra VH-WFE was noted arriving into Biloela / Thangool Airport.

VH-WFE at Rockhampton Airport  (File photo)

The sleek little Citation touched down from Bendigo in Victoria.

It looked to position across from Melbourne (Essendon) late on the previous day.

At the time of writing, it appears that VH-WFE will be staying in Bilo overnight and return to Bendigo and the Essendon on Friday 23 June.

Photo taken by 'IAD'  ©

Australian Army NH Industries MRH-90 Multi-Role Helicopter A40-014 Pops into Rockhampton Airport as "Destrier 11"

On Thursday 22 June,  Australian Army NH Industries MRH-90 Multi-Role Helicopter A40-014 was spotted departing Rockhampton Airport.  It looked to arrive from the North a little earlier and was heard to use the radio callsign of "Destrier 11".

A40-014 was captured as it departed Rocky heading to Townsville.

As mentioned below, on Tuesday 20 June, another MRH-90 was noted passing through Rockhampton Airport heading to Brisbane also as "Destrier 11" - we suspected that to be A40-011 but given A40-014 was using the same callsign, we are now a little unsure!

Meanwhile, during the late afternoon also on Thursday 22 June, another Australian Army MRH-90 was noted passing through Rockhampton Airport.  "Destrier 21" heard to touch down at Rocky from the North and after a short time on the ground it departed to Townsville via the Shoalwater Bay Training Area (SWBTA).  This MRH-90 could've been A40-021 but this is not confirmed.

Thanks to local plane spotter Kayanne H for taking the time to capture and send through these great photos!

All photos taken by Kayanne Hardsman  ©

Queensland Government (QGAir) Rescue Bell 412 Helicopter VH-ESD Flys South via Mackay and Gladstone Airports

On Thursday 22 June, Queensland Government (QGAir) Rescue Bell 412 helicopter VH-ESD was noted flying South from its Townsville base to Archerfield via Mackay and Gladstone Airports.

Sistership and fellow Bell 412EP VH-ESB continues operate as "Rescue 521" on med-evac duties out of Townsville Airport.

As mentioned below, QGAir Rescue (State of Queensland) Agusta AW139 helicopter VH-ESH spent a few days operating out of Townsville Airport in what looked to be a 'fill-in' type roll as both Bells were out-of-service.