Bad weather looms.
It may not be as severe as the media have suggested when it gets here, but time will tell. I noticed a cloud coming in from the South, though the remnants of tropical cyclone “Lusi” are approaching from the North. This low level shot is from the Eastern end of Petone Beach looking out through the heads to the South. As you can see, Pencarrow is buried in the approaching weather.
A little further around the bays and there was a view from Lowry Bay of the Seaview Oil wharf where the tanker “Ardmore Seafarer” was unloading against an ominous looking background.
Terns probably don’t watch television, but they knew the weather was coming and as is often the case were gathering in a place that would give them some shelter from the storm. They tend not to need much, and often it is just a ridge to hide behind. They were coming in, in some numbers. I still don’t have my big lens so you can guess that they were approaching despite my presence and came within four metres or so.
The flock was comprised of white-fronted terns (Sterna striata) … except for one little fellow who looked out of place. It looked like a juvenile, but had different colouring to the white-fronted juveniles. Birding friends have confirmed that this one bird in the flock was a black-fronted tern (Sterna albostriata).
It seemed quite at home among the other terns yet moved independently. What a pleasure it was to see this bird, far less common in this area than the white-fronted variety.
Time to batten down the hatches.