Enter the lion! A potentially substantial winter storm is brewing, Saturn, and forecasts suggest it will leave its mark across a wide swath of the northern US. We focus on the NE US in this post, because of the continuing thread of Eastern Promises and the potential effects for birds from any Nor’easter. The animation below depicts a scenario in which strong northeasterly and easterly flow prevails over NE Canada to begin the week, complemented by increasing northerly flow over portions of New England and the eastern Great Lakes south into the Appalachians. By 6-7 March Saturn (the storm) passes off the East Coast into the Atlantic. However, northeasterly and easterly flow across a wide area of the Northeastern US, Atlantic Maritime Canada, and the Northwestern North Atlantic continue through the weekend.
If this forecast holds true, there is a possibility that some Arctic and European species could put in appearances from Newfoundland to New Jersey, and west into eastern Great Lakes. Conditions across the North Atlantic suggest a strong easterly and northeasterly flow that connects the region of the UK with the western North Atlantic.
So, take home message – birders should watch gull concentrations carefully (Ivory Gull is probably on some, if not many, minds!), and be mindful to check waterfowl, large American Robin flocks, and Killdeer concentrations or open fields, for example. This is particularly true in coastal areas (where and when it is safe to go out!) in New England and the Atlantic Maritimes in Canada. Presumably, conditions are already in place in some of the more northerly and easterly areas of the continent, but this flow will strengthen over the course of the week and into next weekend, suggesting more focus of birding effort beginning mid-week and into the weekend.