[Tweeters] Luna Tunes

Jeff Gibson gibsondesign at msn.com
Fri Dec 6 19:05:23 PST 2013

This message is being brought to you by the Center for Faith-based Astronomy, based right here in the Puget Sound area. Our motto: "just 'cause you can't see it, don't mean it's not there".

We're just throwing the faithless a bone tonight because it's clear and you can actually see astronomy out there. Just look up for a little proof, you of little faith.

We say go out right now (7 pm), and see the exciting Moon right now. She's in waxing mode right now, and headed down to the western horizon. Real purdy.

And you lazy birders should throw ol' Luna a smooch, because without her, your coastal shore birding wouldn't be worth a darn. Yes, it's true, without the Moon there wouldn't be much any tidal action goin on down here. Shorebirds love all those tides and resulting intertidal meals they get!

For the general naturalist, you might try nighttime shore explorations! In winter the lowest tides often come at night. Like tonight - it's a minus 2.6, at midnight, here in Everett, which is pretty good tidepooling. Of course Everett mostly has mud, and no pools, but maybe where you are it's better.

Night tidepooling reminds me of of the ol' Nocturnal House at Woodland Park Zoo ( alas, now defunct). There, in the artificial night- time, the critters were running (or walking real slow- like the Slow Loris) around all over, unlike the other animals snoozing in their daylit cages. At night many marine creatures are quite active! Even in the winter. Have a couple of good flashlights, and dress warm, cause baby, it's cold outside !

Our Director's best night tidepooling trip was at Larabee State Park, just south of Bellingham, many Moons ago. Lots of tide creatures. And Sea Monsters! that really were just a bunch of hauled -out Harbor Seals , invisible on the rocks just off-shore. Their loud horking etc. noises carried dramatically in the fog, sounding like a bunch of expectorating geezers in an old-folks home for Giants! Sorta scary, till the Director figured out the source! Night is different, being kinda dark and all.

So smooch the Moon, get a tidebook, and go out bravely into the night. Don't forget your binocs, etc if it's clear - see craters on the moon! Pretty cool.

Jeff Gibson

Center for Faith Based Astronomy

Everett Wa

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