Sunday, 21 September 2014

A Monday Windstorm in the Forecast

I'm a little late on detecting a possible seabird show in the making.

Right now (Sunday morning) there are strong SW winds sustained at around 60km/h. Over the next 24 hours the wind will switch to be from a more Southerly direction and will continue to be around 60km/h. By noon on Monday winds will have increased to over 80km/h sustained, and gusts up to 100km/h. They should continue to increase a bit in the early afternoon before slowly dying off into the evening.

Surely there'll be storm-petrels pushed close to shore from this event. The real question is if there'll be anything else?

Bruce Mactavish is currently on a boat offshore somewhere to the East of St. John's. He has seen 20+ skua over the last week, the majority of which have been the much sought after South Polar Skua! And, record numbers of Cory's Shearwaters were seen from a relatively nearshore pelagic off of Sambro, Nova Scotia on Sept 16. These birds are surely also flying around to the South of the avalon peninsula... Will the wind be strong enough to force them to fly by a headland or into a sheltered bay?

On Sept 12, 2012 Ian Jones was at Biscay Bay (southern coast of NL) during a tropical storm. Winds that day were 10-30km/h stronger than what is forecast for tomorrow. Here's his list of birds.

A late September, 2013 storm with Northeast winds brought 400+ jaegers, and a Sabine's Gull to Holyrood. Winds weren't nearly as strong that day as they're expected to be tomorrow, but Holyrood is a proven place for storm waifs to show up.

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The forecast:

Cape Race.... gusts up to 100km/h
South coast Marine... 55 knots! And swells up to 7m :S
Wind map for the avalon <- that's the forecasted wind map for 9:30am on Monday.

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Should be some of these tomorrow:

And hopefully some jaeger bombs:

We'll just have to wait and see!

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