Ontario weather radar captures hundreds of thousands of birds
A bizarre blue ring appeared on weather radars near Long Point, Ontario in the province this week, but the odd pattern turned out to be totally unrelated to both temperature and precipitation.
Instead, the blue ring was actually caused by hundreds of thousands of birds.
The Long Point Bird Observatory (LPBO) tweeted a screenshot of one these weather radar images earlier this week, pointing out that the blue ring was not actually a weather pattern but a few hundred thousand swallows and martins.
"See that blue ring around Long Point on this weather radar image from early this morning?" they wrote. "That's not precipitation, it's #birds!
See that blue ring around Long Point on this weather radar image from early this morning? That’s not precipitation, it’s #birds! A few hundred thousand swallows and martins exiting their roosts in the marshes of Long Point to go out foraging for the day. #lpbo pic.twitter.com/ierVgxKPnK— Long Point Bird Obs. (@LongPointBirdOb) August 9, 2020
LPBO said the radar image captured the birds as they were exiting their roosts in the marshes of Long Point to go out foraging for food.
Similar images showing swarms of birds were observed near Lake St. Clair, Point Pelee and Wild Fowl Bay, Michigan.
One avid bird watcher also managed to capture photos of the swallows roosting in the same area at the end of last week, though they look more like insects than birds due to their small size and large number.
A smattering of the 100K+ swallows roosting in the Big Creek NWA last night, and Jupiter was in fine form.@environmentca @BirdsCanada @BirdsCanada_ON @LPWBR @LongPointPP @lpblt @NCC_CNC @NorfolkCountyCA @NorfolkTour #swallows #aerialinsectivores #longpoint 📷 @AnousBirding pic.twitter.com/LwO2DdjXv3— Long Point Bird Obs. (@LongPointBirdOb) August 7, 2020
Both martins and swallows are migratory creatures that head south for the winter, and some images also show the birds flying across Lake Erie and straight into the U.S.
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