Tropicbirds and Cyclones
This review was precipitated when Tim Cockbain recounted his experience of touching a tropicbird at Port Alfred - see pix - and I recalled doing the same on the Seychelles. That caused me to search in the ornithological literiture for Tim's record. While doing so compiled a list of tropicbird records, but his was not amongst them. What I did encounter was the belief that South African records of tropicbirds were individuals driven on our shores by cyclones in the Indian Ocean. This was evaluated against a 50 year archive of all cyclones and storms in the Indian Ocean. There was only a weak relationship between the cyclones and tropicbirds. There are other possible reasons for the occurrence of tropicbirds here including : South African coasts are on the edge of the birds foraging range and the dispersion of birds from their natal site.
A draft of this review is available from the author : firstname.lastname@example.org