TORNADO FLAGLER CO. SURVEY UPDATE (from Jax N.W.S.):PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE JACKSONVILLE FL 615 PM EST SUN DEC 15 2013 ...STORM SURVEY FOR PALM COAST FL TORNADO COMPLETED... DURING THE EVENING HOURS...BETWEEN 655 PM AND 710 PM ON DECEMBER 14 2013...A TORNADO WITH MAXIMUM STRENGTH OF EF1 ON THE ENHANCED FUJITA SCALE TOUCHED DOWN AND CROSSED NORTHERN SECTIONS OF PALM COAST IN FLAGLER COUNTY FLORIDA. THE TORNADO INITIALLY TOUCHED DOWN NORTH OF ESPANOLA ON AN INTERMITTENT TRACK. THE TORNADO THEN INTENSIFIED TO ITS MAXIMUM STRENGTH...95 TO 105 MPH...ACROSS THE B SECTIONS OF PALM COAST ON A CONTINUOUS PATH RANGING IN WIDTH FROM APPROXIMATELY 75 YARDS...TO A MAXIMUM OF AROUND 150 YARDS ON BANNBURY LANE. THE TORNADO THEN WEAKENED AS IT MOVED NORTHEAST TOWARD THE COAST...WITH A PATH WIDTH OF 25 TO 50 YARDS ACROSS THE F AND HAMMOCK SECTIONS. THE LOCATION OF THE INITIAL TOUCHDOWN WAS NEAR 29.52 DEGREES NORTH LATITUDE AND 81.31 DEGREES WEST LONGITUDE. THE LOCATION OF THE FINAL DAMAGE WAS NEAR 29.61 DEGREES NORTH LATITUDE AND 81.19 DEGREES WEST LONGITUDE. THE TOTAL DISTANCE BETWEEN THE INITIAL TOUCHDOWN AND FINAL DAMAGE IS APPROXIMATELY 9.5 MILES...WITH THE LONGEST CONTINUOUS DAMAGE PATH APPROXIMATELY 1 MILE IN THE B SECTION OF PALM COAST. OUR THOUGHTS ARE WITH THOSE THAT HAD STORM DAMAGE AND WISH A SPEEDY RECOVERY GETTING HOMES REPAIRED QUICKLY. THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE WOULD LIKE TO THANK THOSE HOMEOWNERS WHO GRACIOUSLY ALLOWED THE NWS TO SURVEY THE DAMAGE AND PROVIDE IMPORTANT INFORMATION AS TO WHAT EXACTLY TOOK PLACE. THE NWS WOULD ALSO LIKE TO THANK OUR EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT PARTNERS IN FLAGLER COUNTY FOR INSIGHTFUL INFORMATION AND THEIR ASSISTANCE IN THE SURVEY. $$ CORDERO/SANDRIK/ALLEN
SUNDAY MORNING UPDATE:
Our weekend front/storm system is progressing just about as expected:
-- rain in the morning will diminish & end from northwest to southeast from late morning through early afternoon Sunday.
-- the cold front will sweep through the area midday -- through Jax about noon +/- an hour or so.
-- additional rainfall will be less than a quarter of an inch after .5-1.5" Sat. night with the heaviest amounts generally west & south of Jax where some spots managed 2"+. Our Jax NWS has provided a list of rainfall reports - see below.
-- Afternoon clouds will gradually break up allowing for some sun but breezy west to northwest winds will keep temps. in the upper 50s & 60s.
-- It'll be cold early Mon. & early Tue. with lows in the 30s inland, 40s @ the beaches. There could be a bit of light frost west of I-95 each morning.
PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE JACKSONVILLE FL 826 AM EST SUN DEC 15 2013 ...24 HOUR RAINFALL REPORTS ENDING AT 7 AM SUNDAY MORNING…
LOCATION AMOUNT TIME/DATE
ORANGE SPRINGS 2SSW 6.89 0800 AM 12/15
3 WNW ORANGE MILLS 4.76 0515 AM 12/15
3 N FLEMINGTON 4.47 0700 AM 12/15
5 NW SALT SPRINGS 3.62 0804 AM 12/15
3 E RAINBOW LAKES ESTA 3.10 0813 AM 12/15
WASHINGTON OAKS STATE GARDENS 2.45 0730 AM 12/15
4 NW UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 2.39 0700 AM 12/15
3 NW UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 2.28 0809 AM 12/15
ST AUGUSTINE AIRPORT 2.20 0658 AM 12/15
GEORGETOWN 2.10 0700 AM 12/15
3 SE OCALA 2.08 0700 AM 12/15
PALM COAST 2.08 0750 AM 12/15
4 ESE HICKOX 2.03 0500 AM 12/15
WATER PLT 2.00 0814 AM 12/15
5 NE GAINESVILLE AIRPOR 1.97 0600 AM 12/15
GAINESVILLE REGIONAL AIRPORT 1.88 0700 AM 12/15
6 WNW NEWBERRY 1.76 0810 AM 12/15
5 ESE THALMANN 1.76 0804 AM 12/15
4 S BOYS ESTATE 1.74 0752 AM 12/15
HIGH SPRINGS 1.70 0700 AM 12/15
7 NE LAKE GENEVA 1.68 0700 AM 12/15
1 S LAKE GENEVA 1.67 0500 AM 12/15
5 NW INTERLACHEN 1.61 0811 AM 12/15
HOMERVILLE 5N 1.60 0600 AM 12/15
MANOR 1.56 0800 AM 12/15
2 W DEENWOOD 1.44 0804 AM 12/15
5 SE ALACHUA 1.43 0751 AM 12/15
2 NNW FLAGLER BEACH 1.37 0751 AM 12/15
NAHUNTA 6NE 1.33 0700 AM 12/15
5 SSE BROOKER 1.31 0819 AM 12/15
1 W BELLAIR 1.26 0700 AM 12/15
1 N LAKESIDE 1.25 0700 AM 12/15
5 NNW WHITE SPRINGS 1.23 0710 AM 12/15
MALCOLM MC KINNON AIRPORT 1.17 0700 AM 12/15
1 S JACKSONVILLE HEIGH 1.14 0700 AM 12/15
6 SSW HIGH SPRINGS 1.14 0819 AM 12/15
5 WSW UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 1.12 0811 AM 12/15
WTR TR PLT 1.11 0540 AM 12/15
1 WNW STEVEN FOSTER STATE PARK 1.10 0801 AM 12/15
1 NE PALM VALLEY 1.05 0710 AM 12/15
1 SSE ARLINGTON 1.05 0700 AM 12/15
2 WSW DOCTORS INLET 1.05 0812 AM 12/15
1 WNW ORTEGA 1.03 0700 AM 12/15
4 ENE MANDARIN 1.02 0751 AM 12/15 2 NNW TALLYRAND 1.01 0809 AM 12/15
4 W TALBOT ISLAND 0.96 0700 AM 12/15 6 SSE ALACHUA 0.96 0958 PM 12/14
2 SSE ORTEGA 0.93 0702 AM 12/15
2 ENE TALLYRAND 0.91 0700 AM 12/15
1 NW FRUIT COVE 0.89 0813 AM 12/15
1 SSE ORTEGA 0.84 0818 AM 12/15
3 SE ORTEGA 0.82 0700 AM 12/15
2 E NORMANDY 0.81 0813 AM 12/15
10 SW FOLKSTON 0.81 0756 AM 12/15
3 WNW OCKLAWAHA 0.80 0703 AM 12/15
1 E NORMANDY 0.80 0809 AM 12/15
7 NNW TAYLOR 0.79 0804 AM 12/15
3 N BUNNELL 0.77 0752 AM 12/15
3 SSE SUMMERFIELD 0.75 0700 AM 12/15
2 S MACCLENNY 0.74 0810 AM 12/15
BRUNSWICK COOP 0.70 1130 PM 12/14
CRAIG MUNICIPAL AIRPORT 0.69 0700 AM 12/15
DIV FORESTRY 0.68 0700 AM 12/15
2 SSW HIGH POINT 0.67 0812 AM 12/15
MAYPORT NAVSTA 0.67 0700 AM 12/15
3 W DOCTORS INLET 0.67 1158 PM 12/14
3 SSW LAKE WEIR 0.65 0800 AM 12/15
BACON COUNTY AIRPORT 0.62 0700 AM 12/15
4 W LAKESIDE 0.59 0750 AM 12/15
2 SW SAN PABLO 0.56 0751 AM 12/15
FERNANDINA BEACH 0.55 0740 AM 12/15
3 N OLUSTEE 0.54 0804 AM 12/15
6 SSE WELLBORN 0.53 0750 AM 12/15
JACKSONVILLE 0.51 0700 AM 12/15
PRIDGEN 0.48 0705 AM 12/15
3 WSW DOUGLAS 0.47 0700 AM 12/15
FORT CAROLINE 0.46 0814 AM 12/15
HAZLEHURST 0.40 0800 AM 12/15
4 SW BAXLEY 0.36 0804 AM 12/15
6 WNW JACKSONVILLE HEIGH 0.34 0752 AM 12/15
3 NE YULEE 0.32 0750 AM 12/15
FORT CAROLINE 0.27 0752 AM 12/15
LAKESIDE 0.03 0815 AM 12/15
*** It appears a tornado hit Northern Flagler Co. near Palm Coast about 7pm Sat. Check out the tornado "signature" on the N.W.S. radar imagery below as well as the approximate track of damage that included I-95.
Story from Action News -- ** here **.
Not a washout this weekend, but it will rain. I'll update the progress of the rain & implications on the Jags' game via twitter - click ** here **.
The storm system will move swiftly from southwest to northeast with a nice feed of moisture out of the Gulf of Mexico right up across the First Coast. The primary shield of rain -- heavy at times -- will soak the area Sat. night into Sun. morning. A few showers will develop out ahead of the main area of rain Sat. afternoon becoming more widespread by late in the afternoon across Southeast Ga. edging into N. Fl. The rain will diminish from west to east Sun. between about 10am & noon with rainfall totals averaging a half inch to 1.5", locally up to 2".
So the Jags' game could still be damp near kickoff, but the majority of the rain looks to be shifting south & east by early afternoon. Morning temps. in the 60s will only slowly rise topping out in the upper 60s to perhaps 70 by late afternoon.
Images below courtesy the S. Fl. Water Management District:
The following week will feature rather benign weather with cool nights & pleasant days. It still looks like a major weather system will develop over the middle of the U.S. by late week that will move to the east coast by next weekend. The First Coast will warm up ahead of the storm then get some more rain.
The countdown is on to Christmas which means only a little more than a week of the Salvation Army ringing the bell for the Red Kettle. All donations stay local & an avg. of 85 cents of every dollar go directly to the Salvation Army's programs. Click ** here ** to see &/or read a story about a dying Utah man that recently spent a day ringing the bell. Action News raised more than $1,000 for the Jacksonville Salvation Army by ringing on consecutive Saturday's in late Nov. & early Dec.
Earth Gauge: Audubon Christmas Bird Count
Every year, thousands of volunteers identify and count birds during Audubon’s Christmas Bird Count (CBC). The annual count – which is in its 114th year – helps researchers, conservation biologists and others study North American bird populations over time. What have they learned?
- Winter bird ranges are shifting. Audubon’s Birds & Climate Change analysis shows that from 1966-2005 – a 40-year period when the average January temperature in the lower 48 states rose by over 5 degrees Fahrenheit – 58 percent of observed bird species shifted their ranges north. Sixty species shifted their ranges by more than 100 miles. The U.S. EPA included these range shifts as one of 26 Climate Change Indicators in the United States. Learn more about range shifts of finches in the Western, Midwestern, and Eastern United States.
- Doves are expanding their ranges. Since 1950, the number of CBC counts reporting mourning doves has increased by 20 percent. White-winged dove counts are increasing from Texas to Florida and the Eurasian collared-dove, first reported in the 1980s in south Florida, is expanding its range in Florida and neighboring states. Why so many doves? Many dove species prefer urban and suburban areas, so they are benefiting from increased urbanization. Expansion of agriculture and backyard bird feeding also helps doves. And, warmer winter temperatures may be giving doves a hand – the feet of some dove species are susceptible to frostbite during extreme cold snaps.
- Some bird populations are recovering, others are declining. CBC data has shown the recovery of birds like the peregrine falcon and bald eagle. It has also documented the decline and disappearance of other species. Bewick’s wren – a familiar bird in the western U.S. – showed up in eastern U.S. counts from 1949 through the late 1970s. But by 1977, the eastern population began to crash and it hasn’t recovered. Some scientists think that competition from the more aggressive house wren contributed to the decline.
Tip: Learn more and find a count near you. Anyone can participate in the Christmas Bird Count, which takes place from December 14, 2013 to January 5, 2014. The CBC takes place in “count circles” that focus on specific geographic areas. Every circle has a leader, so even if you are a beginner birdwatcher, you’ll be able to count birds with an experienced birder and contribute data to the longest-running wildlife census. If your home happens to be within the boundaries of a count circle, you can count the birds that visit your backyard feeder.
Regional highlights from last year’s count in Florida.
(Sources: National Audubon Society. “Christmas Bird Count.”; “Birds and Climate Change.”; “Dynamic Dove Expansions Citizen Science illustrates the spectacular range expansions taking place throughout North America,”; “Demise of the Eastern Bewick’s Wren,”)
Climate Fact: Bird Health in a Warming World
Birds have the ability to migrate across national and international borders – the Arctic tern holds the record for longest migration distance, traveling over 40,000 miles from Greenland to Antarctica! Birds can migrate short distances, moving from higher to lower elevation on a mountainside; medium distances, spanning from one to several states; and long distances, such as the Arctic tern flying from one pole to the other. Species that don’t migrate are known as resident birds.
During migration birds can be infected with parasites and diseases, such as malaria, cholera and influenza. Bird migration can help diseases spread globally. Cases of West Nile virus were first reported in the New World in August of 1999 in Queens, New York. Unusual bird deaths were reported at the Bronx Zoo and in adjacent areas, followed by human infections. The first case of West Nile virus was isolated from the blood of a woman in the West Nile region of Uganda in 1937. Migratory birds are the suspected vehicle for the introduction of the West Nile virus to North America, where it has spread into Latin America and the Caribbean. Weakening of birds’ immune systems due to stress can contribute to the spread of diseases and parasites during migration – so can climate change.
Warming temperatures have altered the geographical distribution of many species, including birds. Some bird species ranges in North America and other areas of the Northern Hemisphere have shifted north as warming temperatures make northern latitudes more hospitable to species typically found farther south. The shift in bird ranges is an opportunity for parasites and diseases to infect new areas and resident birds. In the Czech Republic, warmer temperatures have changed the distribution of birds carrying tick-borne encephalitis, spreading the parasite into higher altitudes. Native and threatened birds also risk contracting new diseases, such as the Galapagos penguins, which are now infected by malaria parasites. Migratory birds are the suspected vehicle for the introduction of malaria into the Galapagos Islands, where the parasite had not been previously present. In the United States, scientists established for the first time that malaria parasites are able to complete their life cycle in the North American Arctic. The study in Alaska detected malaria infected birds as far as 64°N, causing concern that local birds may be exposed to new parasites with warming temperatures.
(Source: Rappole, J.H., S.R. Derrickson, Z. Hubálek. Emerging Infectious Diseases 6(4): and Jourdain, E., M. Gauthier-Clerc, D.J. Bicout, P. Sabatier. 2007. Emerging Infectious Diseases13(3):365-372. and Loiseau, C., R.J. Harrigan, A.J. Cornel, S.L. Guers, M. Dodge, T. Marzec, J.S. Carlson, B. Seppi, R.N.M. Sehgal. 2012. First Evidence and Predictions of Plasmodium Transmission in Alaskan Bird Populations. PLoS ONE 7(9): e44729. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0044729. and United States Geological Survey. 2012. Climate Change and Wildlife Health. Accessed online 3 December 2013. and The Cornell Lab of Ornithology. Migration. Accessed online 4 December 2013.)
In the News: “Notes from a Snowy Owl Invasion” – Audubon Magazine, December 4, 2013 – Snowy owls from the far north are traveling as far as Bermuda. Why? Scientists are still working on that question.