Monday, May 3, 2010

Favorite things...

Blue has now completed a little more than 1/4 of his migration having flown 2300 miles in total. After arriving at Lake Tefe in Brazil on the Amazon River, he remained there for 6 days, then flew 190 miles taking the expected NW bearing toward Panama, which is still 1000 miles from his current location.

Route to May 7

Last week we saw Blue surprisingly retrace his route by flying south before turning north east toward Lake Tefe, which incidentally is very similar to the lake where Blue spent the winter.

Considering his dramatic change in direction, apparent preference for big lakes and the 6 day respite makes one question if he just "stumbled" across Lake Tefe.

Recall too (see April 24 post) that while wintering Blue repeatedly used a cell phone tower in a very urban setting...well the GE image with GPS locations and the photo below show that he repeated this behavior in the city of Tefe (click on each one to see and compare the full sized versions).

GE view of favored locations in Brazilian city of Tefe

Photo of Tefe (similar to GE image above)

Sure makes one wonder whether we're seeing random behavior or evidence of preference for a few favorite things.

Update on spring conditions...earlier (April 19) I posted some MODIS imagery from April 10 2009 and 2010 that show how spring conditions can differ from one year to next. The following 2 images (about 450 miles X 450 miles) below show snow cover in the region on the Hudson Bay near Churchill, Manitoba (red dot) on May 5th 2009 and 2010.

Churchill snow cover May 3 2009

Churchill snow cover May 3 2010