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High Tide but No Green Grass

Spring Tide, Portbury Wharf

Nor no mud neither. That’s what happens when the Earth gets too close to the Sun. Actually, I’ve never understood this. We’re only 147 million kilometres distant around the beginning of January, compared with 152 million in July. Since the highest tides occur when the Sun and Moon line up, shouldn’t the very highest occur when the Sun is closest?

But no. apparently they happen at the full or new moon nearest the vernal equinox. Even that doesn’t explain today’s height because we have a full moon on the 15th, much closer to the equinox. I’m sure there’s something else going on with ocean currents and the distribution of landmasses. Maybe the distance of the Moon too?

Anyway, this is what Portbury Wharf looked like this dull morning and the second piccie is what it looks like most of the time. Dramatic, n’est-ce pas? The Bristol Channel has the second highest tidal range in the world, which is exciting for birders. The rising sea pushes all the waders dotted round all the mud nearer and nearer to the shore until that too disappears and then where do they go?
Portbury Wharf & Docks

Nowhere near me this morning, apart from a dozen or so turnstones, who clustered on Battery Point. However, the event also pushed all the passerines off Woodhill Bay’s saltmarsh. The resulting mixture of meadow and rock pipits was good practice in separating the two. They’re not so hard.

Not as hard as getting my head round the tides. If anyone can explain, I’d love to know.

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