Into the Storm: A book review

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 4:42 PM GMT on February 25, 2011

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"Matt's compact Jeep became impossible to handle. Water rose on the road. We saw a family hiding in the nook of an overpass and decided that joining them was our best chance to escape danger. We parked the car and ran. Then the tornado ground straight in our direction. Thick tree branches snapped like bread sticks and made gunshot-style sounds that pierced the tornado's baritone howl. Mud flew everywhere. Air getting sucked into the tornado rushed through every seam in the overpass."

Meteorologist Reed Timmer, star of Discovery Channel's Storm Chasers, and writer Andrew Tilin have teamed up to write a highly entertaining and solidly educational book that is filled with gripping stories like this, detailing Timmer's amazing career as a storm-chasing meteorologist. Into the Storm begins in 1998, when Timmer enrolled as an undergraduate in the University of Oklahoma's meteorology program. His early chase stories leave one marveling that he is still alive, as his strong obsession to experience and learn about severe storms was not accompanied by much knowledge or common sense. The excerpt above is an account of his chase of the infamous F5 Bridge Creek, Oklahoma tornado of May 3, 1999--the strongest tornado ever measured, with Doppler-estimated winds of 302 mph. Timmer lucked out, as the tornado made a sudden turn and spared him its full fury. He goes on to explain in detail how taking shelter under an overpass in a tornado is a bad idea (the overpass can magnify the winds, you've elevated yourself into a region where surface friction is not slowing down the winds as much, and you're exposed to flying debris.)

Timmer's narrative of his encounter with the Bridge Creek tornado sets the tone for the book--chase stories interwoven with meteorological education. The meteorology is described in a way that a high school-educated person can understand, and is generally accurate and well-done (one exception: he fails to go into enough detail on how hurricanes get their energy, merely saying they get it from warm ocean waters.) Mixed in with the chase stories and meteorology lessons are details of Timmer's personal life, his past, and feelings about his severe weather fascination. These add a very human touch to the book that will make it appealing to a wide audience. A center eight-page section of color photos enhances the presentation, though I would have liked to see more photos illustrating the University of Oklahoma, the Storm Prediction Center, and the locations of the two dramatic hurricane chases told in the book. His chase stories of Hurricane Katrina (where he weathered the storm at the jail house in Slidell after getting arrested as a suspected looter), and Hurricane Floyd (where he spent the storm in a mobile home near the eyewall), are eye-poppingly insane. He also talks a good deal about the dilemma faced by many meteorologists--how to reconcile our passion for storms with the great suffering and destruction they wreak. He opens the book thusly:

"It's an interesting proposition, seeking happiness from tornadoes. For those few of us who are unquestionably mesmerized by them, chasing tornadoes can be the most fantastic experience in the world. Tornado chasing taxes your intellect and puts you at one with incredible, spectacular forces of nature. Chasing is also a fix for any adrenaline junkie and, if you do it often enough, can become your career. But an obsession with stalking tornadoes can kill or maim you too, and even if chasing doesn't leave you with physical scars or a need for crutches, it's hard to escape unscathed. You'll witness death and destruction of property that sickens your stomach and saddens your heart. Your family will worry about you. Significant others will tire of playing second fiddle. Peers will disagree with the way you chase, and you'll lose friends to your obsession."

Timmer achieves some degree of relief from this dilemma by realizing that storm chasers do a public service by calling in reports that lead to more accurate tornado warnings, saving lives. He is also dedicated to collecting data for tornado research using video and instrumented chase vehicles. Still, the dilemma of attempting to gain happiness from tornadoes is one Timmer does not entirely have the answers to, giving this book a human element often lacking in books written by scientists. I recommend Into the Storm to both scientists and non-scientists; the stories are amazing, and the science is presented in a non-obtrusive way that does not slow down the book, but instead enhances it. Teaching meteorology using stories is a great way to educate people, and Timmer has done a great service to the field of meteorology by writing this book. Three and a half out of four stars. Into the Storm is $16.33 (hardback) from amazon.com. The amazon website and Timmer's tornadovideos.net website also have a spectacular 2-minute video clip highlighting some of the chases documented in the book.

This review will appear later this year in the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, and is Copyright 2011 American Meteorological Society (AMS). Permission to use figures, tables, and brief excerpts from this work in scientific and educational works is hereby granted provided that the source is acknowledged. Any use of material in this work that is determined to be "fair use" under Section 107 of the U.S. Copyright Act September 2010 Page 2 or that satisfies the conditions specified in Section 108 of the U.S. Copyright Act (17 USC ?108, as revised by P.L. 94-553) does not require the AMS's permission. Republication, systematic reproduction, posting in electronic form, such as on a web site or in a searchable database, or other uses of this material, except as exempted by the above statement, requires written permission or a license from the AMS. Additional details are provided in the AMS Copyright Policy, available on the AMS Web site located at (http://www.ametsoc.org/) or from the AMS at 617-227-2425 or copyright@ametsoc.org.

Wunderground hiring a climate scientist
Weather Underground, Inc. is seeking a full-time scientist with excellent communication and programming skills to improve our climate change and meteorology education web pages. Initial task: use downscaled climate model output to generate "far-future" forecasts. The position requires an M.S. or Ph.D. in meteorology. Consult our employment web page for a full job description and application info. The increase in significant weather events over the past year has kept me tied up blogging, giving me little time to work on expanding the content of our climate change and weather education web pages. It is time to get some help!

Jeff Masters

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1105. hcubed
9:14 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting JFLORIDA:


Best JFLORIDA post ever...
Member Since: May 18, 2007 Posts: 289 Comments: 1639
1104. kwgirl
4:56 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting Grothar:


Nothing wrong with reading. A good hobby to have. Sedentary pursuits are becoming more popular with me every day. Although I do walk a lot looking for the remote to my TV. (Morocco must have been educating)
Yeah first and only time I saw escargot on the hoof, so to speak. I kept taking them off the barrel and throwing them back in as they tried to escape. And the first time I ever heard of anyone eating snails. I was 5 years old at the time.
Member Since: March 28, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 1532
1103. Jedkins01
3:20 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting Neapolitan:
Click for larger image (PDF):

Appropriate tropical weather-related image.


Appropriate tropical weather-related image.


ah great map!
Member Since: August 21, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 7832
1102. Jedkins01
3:19 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting cat5hurricane:

Nice explanation.

This very well could be why thunder never seems to be so sharp, clear and loud in thundersnow. Like a snowplow or truck down a snowy blvd - the snow helps to insulate the sound.


Yep, that is why!
Member Since: August 21, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 7832
1101. Jedkins01
3:18 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting kwgirl:
Have you seen the big black spiders that hang out in the mangroves? They don't sit in their webs, they move about rather quickly. I believe they are a type of hunting spider, but look like the golden orbs.


yeah those things are crazy! I remember walking through some thick mangroves in Ft. Desoto, those huge things were everywhere, worst mistake of my life! lol
Member Since: August 21, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 7832
1100. cat5hurricane
3:09 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
New Blog
Member Since: August 17, 2010 Posts: 21 Comments: 6939
1099. hydrus
3:08 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting Grothar:


I have been trying to find a map of Florida that showed the areas with the most strikes. It was a good map. If I remember, it was near Ocala and the West Coast, but I can't find the thing. If anyone can find it, I would appreciate it.
Good morning Gro. Here is our next round of severe 5 days out. I can honestly say this is getting old and the severe weather season has only just begun...
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 21740
1098. sirmaelstrom
3:06 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
№ 1072
Quoting greentortuloni:
Arctic Ice levels started on the downturn: melting season has started.


At least it seems that way. Probably take a few weeks to be definite.




Larger image here.

Maybe, but as you say, it may take a few weeks to tell. Over the past ten years there has often been small dips as we have seen recently (the IARC-JAXA doesn't show the dip yet but I'm sure it will within a few days). It seems from the graph above that the peak has come anywhere from early to late March since 2002.
Member Since: February 19, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 580
1097. Grothar
3:05 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting Neapolitan:
Click for larger image (PDF):

Appropriate tropical weather-related image.


Appropriate tropical weather-related image.


Thanks, looks like you get your share, too! The last few years on the east coast, we have had very few thunderstorms and very little rain. Not like it used to be.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 26840
1096. cat5hurricane
2:59 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting Neapolitan:
Click for larger image (PDF):

Appropriate tropical weather-related image.

This is a really neat map. Thank you for sharing.
Member Since: August 17, 2010 Posts: 21 Comments: 6939
1095. Neapolitan
2:57 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
Click for larger image (PDF):

Appropriate tropical weather-related image.


Appropriate tropical weather-related image.
Member Since: November 8, 2009 Posts: 4 Comments: 13602
1094. Grothar
2:52 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting Jedkins01:


I think its often due to the fact that a large portion of lightning strikes here occur socked in torrential rain. When you get lighting strikes here in open air, its just as loud as any where else. However, many times the rain is so heavy here, when you get a thunderstorm it is suppressing the thunder. I have seen that many times, some very impressive light shows, sometimes with very close lighting hits, but they are somewhat drowned out by the crazy rainfall intensity we get along with it.

I'm not sure about Japan. But as for south Dakota, the relatively low precipitation rates thunderstorms have there compared to Florida would allow the thunder to be louder in the middle of a thunderstorm.


I have been trying to find a map of Florida that showed the areas with the most strikes. It was a good map. If I remember, it was near Ocala and the West Coast, but I can't find the thing. If anyone can find it, I would appreciate it.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 26840
1093. Grothar
2:47 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting kwgirl:
Hi Grothar. My hobbies are, reading (got soooo many books I can't bring myself to get rid of), baking (only if I give it away) sewing (when the mood grabs me) jigsaw puzzles, games, crossword puzzles. I just realized all are pretty sedentary pursuits. Figures. When I was a child it was climbing trees, biking, skating and anything outdoors. I spent 3 years of my life in Morocco with no tv and only arabic radio. When I moved to Key West we only got two tv channels, so I was the type of kid who disappeared all day, only to come home hopefully before the street lights came on.


Nothing wrong with reading. A good hobby to have. Sedentary pursuits are becoming more popular with me every day. Although I do walk a lot looking for the remote to my TV. (Morocco must have been educating)
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 26840
1092. RipplinH2O
2:39 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
Had a nest of spiders open up on me as a kid. That was 65 years ago and I still get the absolute heebie geebies over spiders...
Member Since: July 30, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 491
1091. cat5hurricane
2:39 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting beell:
Since humid air is less dense, sound (thunder) travels faster and you don't have as long to hear it...

Yeah, that's gotta be it.

Morning Beell,

Do you have yesterday's storm reports up on your blog yet?
Member Since: August 17, 2010 Posts: 21 Comments: 6939
1090. kwgirl
2:38 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting Grothar:
Other than our obvious interest in weather, I would like to know what other hobbies some of you have. Don't mean to be nosy, but I have always found that an interesting part of human nature. It would be nice if some of us shared the same ones. We obviously know our differences, but sometimes it would be nice to know what common bonds we also share.
Hi Grothar. My hobbies are, reading (got soooo many books I can't bring myself to get rid of), baking (only if I give it away) sewing (when the mood grabs me) jigsaw puzzles, games, crossword puzzles. I just realized all are pretty sedentary pursuits. Figures. When I was a child it was climbing trees, biking, skating and anything outdoors. I spent 3 years of my life in Morocco with no tv and only arabic radio. When I moved to Key West we only got two tv channels, so I was the type of kid who disappeared all day, only to come home hopefully before the street lights came on.
Member Since: March 28, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 1532
1089. Orcasystems
2:37 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
Complete Update






Member Since: October 1, 2007 Posts: 81 Comments: 26511
1088. nrtiwlnvragn
2:31 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
I see Dr. Masters got to experience a live shuttle launch. It is quite the experience.
Member Since: September 23, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 11269
1087. cat5hurricane
2:29 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting kwgirl:
Good morning everyone. We have them down here in the Keys. We call them Golden Orbs or banana spiders. They are not poisonous but are great catchers of bugs. I try not to disturb them when I see them. Though I really am afraid of spiders I try not to kill any.

As ugly looking as they can be, you are correct: banana spiders are great for bug control!
Member Since: August 17, 2010 Posts: 21 Comments: 6939
1086. kwgirl
2:25 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting Jedkins01:



One of those was an inch from my face while hunting in south Florida, needless to say, it did make me jump!
Have you seen the big black spiders that hang out in the mangroves? They don't sit in their webs, they move about rather quickly. I believe they are a type of hunting spider, but look like the golden orbs.
Member Since: March 28, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 1532
1085. beell
2:24 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
Since humid air is less dense, sound (thunder) travels faster and you don't have as long to hear it...

Yeah, that's gotta be it.
Member Since: September 11, 2007 Posts: 144 Comments: 16874
1084. kwgirl
2:23 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting Grothar:
We have these all over here. They are called yellow garden spiders. Now you know why I am on the blog at night and we are not sitting outside. They are quite large.


Good morning everyone. We have them down here in the Keys. We call them Golden Orbs or banana spiders. They are not poisonous but are great catchers of bugs. I try not to disturb them when I see them. Though I really am afraid of spiders I try not to kill any.
Member Since: March 28, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 1532
1083. cat5hurricane
2:21 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
URGENT - WEATHER MESSAGE
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE COLUMBIA SC
330 AM EST TUE MAR 1 2011

GAZ040-063>065-077-SCZ015-016-018-020>022-025>031 -035>038-041-
011800-
/O.CON.KCAE.LW.Y.0010.000000T0000Z-110301T1800Z/
LINCOLN-MCDUFFIE-COLUMBIA-RICHMOND-BURKE-LANCASTE R-CHESTERFIELD-
MCCORMICK-NEWBERRY-FAIRFIELD-KERSHAW-EDGEFIELD-SA LUDA-LEXINGTON-
RICHLAND-LEE-AIKEN-SUMTER-BARNWELL-ORANGEBURG-CAL HOUN-CLARENDON-
BAMBERG-
INCLUDING THE CITIES OF...LINCOLNTON...THOMSON...MARTINEZ...
EVANS...HEPHZIBAH...WAYNESBORO...LANCASTER...ELGI N...CHERAW...
PAGELAND...MCCORMICK...NEWBERRY...WINNSBORO...CAM DEN...LUGOFF...
EDGEFIELD...JOHNSTON...SALUDA...RIDGE SPRING...WEST COLUMBIA...
CAYCE...LEXINGTON...RED BANK...COLUMBIA...BISHOPVILLE...AIKEN...
NORTH AUGUSTA...SUMTER...BARNWELL...WILLISTON...BLACKVIL LE...
ORANGEBURG...ST. MATTHEWS...MANNING...SUMMERTON...BAMBERG...
DENMARK
330 AM EST TUE MAR 1 2011

...LAKE WIND ADVISORY REMAINS IN EFFECT UNTIL 1 PM EST THIS
AFTERNOON...

A LAKE WIND ADVISORY REMAINS IN EFFECT UNTIL 1 PM EST THIS
AFTERNOON.

* TIMING: CONTINUING INTO EARLY THIS AFTERNOON.

* WINDS: NORTHEAST WINDS 15 TO 25 KNOTS DIMINISHING TO 10 TO 20
KNOTS THIS AFTERNOON.

* IMPACTS: STRONG WINDS WILL CAUSE ROUGH CHOP ON AREA LAKES...
CREATING HAZARDOUS CONDITIONS FOR SMALL CRAFT.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

A LAKE WIND ADVISORY INDICATES THAT WINDS WILL CAUSE ROUGH CHOP
ON AREA LAKES. SMALL BOATS WILL BE ESPECIALLY PRONE TO CAPSIZING.

&&

$$
Member Since: August 17, 2010 Posts: 21 Comments: 6939
1082. cat5hurricane
2:20 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
Top 5 Snowiest February for Milwaukee & Madison
Member Since: August 17, 2010 Posts: 21 Comments: 6939
1081. cat5hurricane
2:13 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting Jedkins01:


I think its often due to the fact that a large portion of lightning strikes here occur socked in torrential rain. When you get lighting strikes here in open air, its just as loud as any where else. However, many times the rain is so heavy here, when you get a thunderstorm it is suppressing the thunder. I have seen that many times, some very impressive light shows, sometimes with very close lighting hits, but they are somewhat drowned out by the crazy rainfall intensity we get along with it.

I'm not sure about Japan. But as for south Dakota, the relatively low precipitation rates thunderstorms have there compared to Florida would allow the thunder to be louder in the middle of a thunderstorm.

Nice explanation.

This very well could be why thunder never seems to be so sharp, clear and loud in thundersnow. Like a snowplow or truck down a snowy blvd - the snow helps to insulate the sound.
Member Since: August 17, 2010 Posts: 21 Comments: 6939
1080. Skyepony (Mod)
2:08 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
I've started tracking the fires in ECFL in my blog again. Major road closures today.. NB I-95 closed most the day & US1 is another major artery.

FIRE - BRUSH/FOREST VOLUSIA SR-11 [N OF] x[SR-40] [ORMOND BEACH] VISIBILITY IS CLEAR
FIRE - BRUSH/FOREST VOLUSIA SR-40 x[US-17] [PIERSON] ROAD OPEN
FIRE - BRUSH/FOREST VOLUSIA SR415 x[LAKE ASHBY RD] [NEW SMYRNA BEACH] VISIBILITY IS CLEAR
FIRE - BRUSH/FOREST 02:42 PM 03:06 PM BREVARD I95 SB x[MM231.0] [MIMS] NORTHBOUND AND SOUTHBOUND I-95 OPEN/US-1 STILL CLOSED
FIRE - BRUSH/FOREST 08:56 PM 08:56 PM VOLUSIA US-1 SB x[KENNEDY PKY] [OAK HILL] SOUTHBOUND US-1 CLOSED
FIRE - BRUSH/FOREST 09:28 PM 09:48 PM VOLUSIA I95 SB x[MM249.0] [NEW SMYRNA BEACH] NB 95 SHUT DOWN AT SR44 DETOUR WB SR44 EXPECTED TO BE CLOSED MOST OF THE DAY
Member Since: August 10, 2005 Posts: 192 Comments: 38643
1079. Jedkins01
2:07 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting biff4ugo:
Good Morning/evening

Yes, west central Florida is a lightning hot spot in the US.
One oddness I have noticed is that thunder in Florida seems much quieter than in say, South Dakota or Japan. I'm not sure if it is the lack of mountains reflecting the sound, a quality of humidity, or what. Sure it is loud up close, but even cloud to cloud rolling thunder just seems softer in Florida. Has anyone else noticed that?


I noticed water levels on the Suwannee near Manatee springs were way down.


I think its often due to the fact that a large portion of lightning strikes here occur socked in torrential rain. When you get lighting strikes here in open air, its just as loud as any where else. However, many times the rain is so heavy here, when you get a thunderstorm it is suppressing the thunder. I have seen that many times, some very impressive light shows, sometimes with very close lighting hits, but they are somewhat drowned out by the crazy rainfall intensity we get along with it.

I'm not sure about Japan. But as for south Dakota, the relatively low precipitation rates thunderstorms have there compared to Florida would allow the thunder to be louder in the middle of a thunderstorm.
Member Since: August 21, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 7832
1078. biff4ugo
1:36 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
Good Morning/evening

Yes, west central Florida is a lightning hot spot in the US.
One oddness I have noticed is that thunder in Florida seems much quieter than in say, South Dakota or Japan. I'm not sure if it is the lack of mountains reflecting the sound, a quality of humidity, or what. Sure it is loud up close, but even cloud to cloud rolling thunder just seems softer in Florida. Has anyone else noticed that?


I noticed water levels on the Suwannee near Manatee springs were way down.
Member Since: December 28, 2006 Posts: 115 Comments: 1590
1077. cat5hurricane
1:12 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
Drought Conditions Continue To Get Worse Over South Florida
Member Since: August 17, 2010 Posts: 21 Comments: 6939
1076. cat5hurricane
1:10 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
2010-2011 Winter Snowfall Totals for Chicago and Rockford
Member Since: August 17, 2010 Posts: 21 Comments: 6939
1075. cat5hurricane
1:09 PM GMT on March 01, 2011
Warm Spell 37 Years Ago This Week
Member Since: August 17, 2010 Posts: 21 Comments: 6939
1074. islander101010
11:58 AM GMT on March 01, 2011
where is the river of storms going to be this yr ? following the gulf stream north is a good bet. last yr most did not even get that far. also notice the weak front moving through central fl. well there is a bad fire just west of titusville thankfully the front has some showers with it.
Member Since: September 11, 2010 Posts: 1 Comments: 4880
1073. PolishHurrMaster
10:58 AM GMT on March 01, 2011
A question for WunderBlogers:Is 2003 a good analog year for 2011?
Member Since: May 19, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 358
1072. greentortuloni
9:43 AM GMT on March 01, 2011
Arctic Ice levels started on the downturn: melting season has started.


At least it seems that way. Probably take a few weeks to be definite.

Member Since: June 5, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 1220
1071. EYEStoSEA
7:25 AM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting xcool:


post by xcool ...

image credit .nrlssc.nav


Wow...a bright flashy visual....very nice.:} TY
Member Since: September 16, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 1496
1070. xcool
7:22 AM GMT on March 01, 2011


post by xcool ...

image credit .nrlssc.nav
Member Since: September 26, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 15684
1069. Jedkins01
7:21 AM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting EYEStoSEA:


Goodnight Jed...dont let those swamp bugs bite:}


haha thanks you too!
Member Since: August 21, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 7832
1068. EYEStoSEA
7:18 AM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting Jedkins01:
dang man, tried to post a funny video here, oh well, I better go to bed anyway...


Goodnight Jed...dont let those swamp bugs bite:}
Member Since: September 16, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 1496
1067. Grothar
7:18 AM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting flsky:

Personally, I'm English, Scottish, Irish, Dutch and German - and, who knows whatever else! My family has been here from the begnning!


Then it is likely you must have some Native American in there somewhere. I still have difficulty explaining my heritage. Nowegian, German, Swedish, Italian, French, Greek is just a start. We grew up speaking so many different languages, I still do not know what language in which I really think. I read most of American Literature in German first then Norwegian and later in English. French Literature is very rich as well. If there is ever some books in which you have an interest, you can always WU mail me and I can recommend some if you like.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 26840
1066. Jedkins01
7:15 AM GMT on March 01, 2011
dang man, tried to post a funny video here, oh well, I better go to bed anyway...
Member Since: August 21, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 7832
1065. Jedkins01
7:13 AM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting EYEStoSEA:


England/Scotland/Ireland/Native American Choctaw


Welsh/Scottish/Irish here, ironically enough, I am kinda dark skinned for my back round.
Member Since: August 21, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 7832
1064. EYEStoSEA
7:12 AM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting flsky:

Personally, I'm English, Scottish, Irish, Dutch and German - and, who knows whatever else! My family has been here from the begnning!


Don't ya just love knowing that....I do....
Member Since: September 16, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 1496
1063. Grothar
7:11 AM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting flsky:

At the moment, I've been reading some classics that I haven't read ever, or in a very long time. I've recently bought a Kindle (sorry about the ad) and I've downloaded every free book I could get my hands on. Presently, I'm reading Moby Dick for the 3rd time and Of Human Bondage for the first.


Of Human Bondage was one of my favorites. Like the character in the book, I went to Heidelberg University, so there was a connection when I read it again when I was older. Another one in which you might be interested is "Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man" by James Joyce. Similarities in character conflict between both books.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 26840
1062. flsky
7:08 AM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting EYEStoSEA:


England/Scotland/Ireland/Native American Choctaw

Personally, I'm English, Scottish, Irish, Dutch and German - and, who knows whatever else! My family has been here from the begnning!
Member Since: October 24, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 2045
1061. Jedkins01
7:07 AM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting KoritheMan:


Yeah, I wasn't trying to demonize your hobby in any way, hence the emoticon (":P") at the end.


haha its all good
Member Since: August 21, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 7832
1060. Jedkins01
7:06 AM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting flsky:

Thanks for this info. I know these aren't yellow jackets - much smaller and with no color. I'll keep the nest as is it for now - no skin off my nose. If they want it back - they are certainly welcome to it.


Good deal, glad to hear not everyone just eliminates every wasp they see, wasps are very beneficial, they hunt and kill masses of amounts of flies, beetles, grubs, and mosquitoes, they then ground them up and feed them to their young in those paper combs. Without wasps our crops would be eaten alive by hungry pests, and we would be overwhelmed with mosquitoes and other fly pests.
Member Since: August 21, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 7832
1059. KoritheMan
7:03 AM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting Jedkins01:


lol maybe to you it is, to each his own. For me, even if I come back empty which is often the case in hunting trips, I very much enjoy sitting out in the backwoods and soaking up nature.


Yeah, I wasn't trying to demonize your hobby in any way, hence the emoticon (":P") at the end.
Member Since: March 7, 2007 Posts: 597 Comments: 21081
1058. Jedkins01
7:03 AM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting Grothar:


Actually, I was never called any name in school that I can remember. I was alway bigger than most kids and kind of tough (really). I always had a good sense of humor and even if someone did insult me, I always turned it into a joke. In the voting in my senior year, I won in three categories. Brightest, wittiest and least likely to get beaten up.



haha, for me, I am short but have always been very athletic. Always up to compete hard in any sport, accept basketball because I have no skill in that, lol, and growing up a hard working outdoor boy, Ive never been bullied. However I would get punks start stuff with me and didn't realize just because I'm not 6 ft doesn't mean I can't hold my own, I used to get in fights often and school and never lost one. I learned to just always walk away after I got to about 16 instead of letting my fiery temper let out at people and learned to start making peace rather than wars lol. I got straight A's and always had a mind for science yet I live like a simple working man. I never fit into any groups because of that odd combination, but I found some great friends I would never trade in for popularity any day. The only thing I lack is a girl, one day, one day :)
Member Since: August 21, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 7832
1057. EYEStoSEA
6:59 AM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting Grothar:


Hmmm. Part of the American fabric. Have you ever been able to determine the ancestory? From what I remember, most early settlers in Mississippi were of British, Scot and some French stock. I believe the Germans might have come a little later.


England/Scotland/Ireland/Native American Choctaw
Member Since: September 16, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 1496
1056. flsky
6:57 AM GMT on March 01, 2011
Quoting Jedkins01:


They won't return to that nest. Sometimes in Florida, if the winter is warm enough, wasps will stay on it through the winter and continue enlarging it the next season. However most of the time, wasps will abandon the nest for the winter, and the reproductive wasps, the queens, produced in fall by that nest will go to start there own nest this spring. Sometimes these wasps will return to the old site and build a new nest on top of the old one, or nearby, but if the nest is abandoned during the winter, they don't return to the same nest.

Yellow jackets are known for building super colonies because their warm paper coverings combined with their often underground nestings can keep the nest sustained through Florida winters. So they continue building the nest in the following season. However, most yellow jacket nests are abandoned too during the winter.

Trust me, you don't want to encounter a yellowjacket super colony, they can be extremely dangerous.

Regular open comb paper wasp nests do make great wasps to watch because they don't attack if you don't disturb them.

My current goal is to somehow capture a yellow jacket queen this spring before it builds a nest and somehow get it to build a nest in my enclosure, they are extremely aggressive but are some of the coolest things to watch work on their nests.

Thanks for this info. I know these aren't yellow jackets - much smaller and with no color. I'll keep the nest as is it for now - no skin off my nose. If they want it back - they are certainly welcome to it.
Member Since: October 24, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 2045
1055. EYEStoSEA
6:50 AM GMT on March 01, 2011
One thing, pertaining to weather, when researching old township platt maps , the surveyor would actually would include areas where hurricane damage would have occured....I remember one on a platt map , I believe it was when they were platting Harrison Co., was very wide spread.....fascinating stuff
Member Since: September 16, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 1496

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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.