This Bird Predicts Hurricanes Better Than Meteorologists
From: Cool Green Science by Nature by Joe Smith, September 26, 2018
- The veery is a thrush that nests in forests across the northern U.S. and southern Canada and spends the winters in South America’s Amazon region.
- The veery must reckon with the Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico and the storms that may lurk within them.
- In the years with a more severe hurricane season, veeries nesting in Delaware cut their breeding season short.
- The veeries don’t sense a hurricane coming a few days before it was upon them. They instead somehow intuit the severity of the upcoming hurricane season months in advance.
- Before seasons are found to have high hurricane activity, Veeries alter the timing of nesting and level of reproductive output to prepare their bodies for a migration departure schedule tuned to avoid hurricanes.
- Veeries are at least as good as (and maybe a little better than) meteorological forecasts in their ability to predict the severity of the coming hurricane season.