Archive for January, 2008

Regional Fire Danger Now High

Wednesday, January 30th, 2008

The fire danger classification for most of the Wellington region reached high yesterday with some areas classified extreme.

(more…)

Tawa Temperature Records

Tuesday, January 29th, 2008

Weather conditions during January 2008 are setting some new four-year records for Tawa.

(more…)

Hydro Lakes Remain Depleted

Saturday, January 26th, 2008

Low inflows, dry weather and increased demand have kept depleted hydro lakes at a reduced level during the first half of January 2008.

(more…)

Matata Earthquakes

Friday, January 25th, 2008

A pair of earthquakes struck about 1 minute apart near Matata in the Bay of Plenty this morning. The first of the quakes was the strongest member of the Matata earthquake swarm to be recorded since the magnitude 4.7 event of September last year.

(more…)

South Pacific Quakes Continue

Thursday, January 24th, 2008

Earthquake activity in the islands of the South Pacific has continued this week with quakes greater than magnitude 4.5 in New Zealand and the Kermadecs, near Tonga and Fiji, and in the Santa Cruz and Loyalty Islands.

(more…)

Tectonic Ping-Pong

Monday, January 21st, 2008

A series of earthquakes struck the tectonic plate boundaries near New Zealand this morning, with several events in the southern Kermadecs, upper South Island and off the Fiordland coast.

(more…)

Earthquakes, South Pacific

Sunday, January 20th, 2008

Earthquake activity in the islands of the South Pacific has increased during the past week, with eight moderate or strong events near Tonga, Fiji and Vanuatu.

(more…)

Tropical Cyclone Funa

Sunday, January 20th, 2008

Tropical Cyclones don’t often feature in New Zealand’s weather but, when they do, they usually cause serious damage and are remembered by name. Even people with only a casual interest in the weather will recognise the names Cyclone Bola, Cyclone Drena and Cyclone Giselle which is better-known as the Wahine Storm.

A tropical cyclone which formed near Vanuatu a week ago could herald the start of a cyclone season for New Zealand this year.

(more…)

Earthquakes at Mt. Ngauruhoe

Saturday, January 19th, 2008

Shallow earthquake activity on the northern flank of Ngauruhoe volcano, which began in May 2006, has increased.

(more…)

Strong Earthquake, Fiji Region

Wednesday, January 16th, 2008

A strong, deep earthquake struck the southern Fiji region this morning. The magnitude 6.4 quake which struck at 6:52 a.m. on Wednesday 16th January 2008 was located 455 km south-south-east of Suva, Fiji (160 km south-west of Ndoi Island) at a depth of 586 km.

This morning’s quake was located about 400 km north of a 380 km deep magnitude 4.6 quake which struck on January 9th at a location half-way between Raoul Island and Ndoi Island.

[Compiled from data supplied by the U.S. Geological Survey and its contributing agencies.]

What Do You Call

Tuesday, January 15th, 2008

a group of hedgehogs? This question ran through my mind last night after I had investigated some furtive late-night rustlings in the fernery, and found four hedgehogs.

(more…)

The Tui Debate of 2008

Sunday, January 13th, 2008

There has been some debate about the noise that the increasing tui population is making in built-up areas of Wellington as the birds re-establish themselves. Apparently the dawn chorus is getting too loud for some residents.

To try and understand what the to-do is about, I spoke to an awni… er ornolo… ummm ornitholo… oh, “bird expert person” to see what he thought about the matter. I visited Professor Twitchett, Head of the Birdology Department at the University of Tawa and spent a day with him in his maimai which is located in the branches of a Norfolk Pine in the campus of the local university.

(more…)

Sir Edmund Percival Hillary KG, ONZ, KBE 1919 – 2008

Friday, January 11th, 2008

The best-known New Zealander of the 20th century, Sir Edmund Hillary, died at the age of 88 this morning, Friday 11th January 2008.

Best known for conquering the planet’s highest mountain Mt. Everest in 1953, Sir Ed, as he was known to New Zealanders, held a special place in the nation’s heart. He was a diplomat, philanthropist, adventurer, innovator, but most importantly one of us.

(more…)

Hydro Storage Improves

Friday, January 11th, 2008

New Zealand’s hydro storage improved during December 2007, recovering from the dramatic lows of November. However, at year’s end, storage still remained below average for the time of year.

(more…)

Geological Summary for New Zealand Area, December 2007

Thursday, January 10th, 2008

Earthquake activity increased during December 2007. White Island, Mt Ngauruhoe, and Mt Ruapehu remained at Alert Level 1.

(more…)