Of Some Cooling and Tropicbirds

4 May

May 2, 2019/Day 209

Noon Position: 09 40N  38 22W

Course(t)/Speed(kts): NW 6.5

Miles since departure: 28,176

Avg. Miles/Day: 135


Mo is cranking out the miles as if she’s a space ship on a long, straight shot for deep space. Next stop, the rings of Saturn.

This morning at 6am, the cabin temperature was 79 degrees. That’s the first time the cabin has been below 80 in the morning since April 12th. At noon, water temperature was 79 degrees–first time below 80 since April 10th.

Even without the numbers, I can tell it’s beginning to cool; I’ve pulled a sheet over me at some time in the night for two nights running. Previously it’s been too hot for any cover at all.

Tropicbirds have visited twice in the last two days. In the Pacific, they’ll be seen routinely, if infrequently, anywhere between 30N and 30S, but this is our first sighting in the Atlantic.

Small, stocky, white birds that come in close to inspect Mo and her inhabitants, they give the impression of a dog looking for scraps.

There are three varieties of Tropicbirds: Red-Tailed, White-Tailed and Red-Billed. This ocean hosts the latter two. The most distinctive feature: as the name suggests, a long, quill of a tail feather.

Today’s inquisitor, White-Tailed. Immature. No long quill of a tail feather.

They also, both in this ocean and the Pacific, try to land at the masthead. They never succeed here or there. After many circlings, they give a “khraik” and fly off in disgust.

No food; no place to sit down; what use is it?

This article was syndicated from The Figure 8 Voyage


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