Publish date:

That's not a storm on the radar, it's geese

Migration season has arrived in the midwest.
Author:

Don't worry, all of the green and blue specks on the radar aren't Friday's looming snowstorm arriving early. These are actually thousands of migrating geese that the radar is picking up. 

It happened this week on radar near Aberdeen, South Dakota, not far from the western Minnesota border. 

The National Weather Service-Aberdeen explains the phenomenon like this: 

Thousands of geese have started their migration north making their way into South Dakota. As these birds fly over radar sites they can often be detected. One particular radar signature sometimes termed a “roost ring” was easily seen in radar images on March 16. A “roost ring” appears as birds leave their roost and fly into the air. The ring expands until birds begin dispersing and foraging.

It's not clear that these birds on radar, but it's a good bet they're snow geese returning north after spending the winter down south. 

South Dakota is known for its spectacular spring snow goose migration.  

The radar loop on this page is actually really cool, almost like a small circle exploding outward. 

We featured a similar story last July when radar in La Crosse, Wisconsin, picked up a massive mayfly hatch, which is part amazing and part disgusting. 

According to Smithsonian, birds and bugs were first seen on radar during World War II, and they're commonly seen nowadays when birds take flight at night before landing and resting before sunrise. 

Next Up

Anya Magnuson

Woman in critical condition after driver hit her in Minneapolis

She's been unresponsive, but recently gave a thumbs up to her family.

Anthony Edwards

Ant's rally not enough to save Timberwolves

Edwards' third-quarter explosion came too late in a loss to the Pelicans.

Rent, mortgage, house, key, door

Victims of property manager's sexual harassment to get $736,000

It's part of a consent decree announced by the Department of Justice Monday.

The Liffey Pub Facebook

St. Paul's Irish pub The Liffey reveals it won't reopen

The beloved pub has been closed since the start of the pandemic.

Proctor football

Proctor football investigation: Case goes to county attorney

The office will review the evidence and consider possible criminal charges.

kirsten mitchell screegrab

'I’m heading home!': CA reporter announces return to WCCO

Kirsten Mitchell interned at WCCO years ago. Now, she's coming back as a reporter.

eggs

As part of price gouging settlement, farm to donate 1M eggs to food nonprofits

The egg producer will donate more than 1 million eggs to nonprofits fighting hunger.

plane, Piper PA-32

Sheriff: Witnesses saw plane 'performing aerial maneuvers' before fatal crash

The single-engine aircraft went down in northern Wisconsin, killing a brother and sister.

Screen Shot 2021-10-25 at 8.51.02 AM

Community rallies around Minnetonka HS dancer battling brain tumor

A fundraiser raised more than $44,000 of its $60,000 goal in the first two days.

Related

Screen Shot 2019-06-11 at 7.18.33 AM

That's not rain on Duluth's weather radar – it's birds

Meteorologists in Duluth were curious what the blue blob on radar was.

Screen Shot 2021-10-20 at 9.37.24 AM

Here's what the future radar shows; 'a few robust' storms possible

Rain is on the way. Some hail is also possible in stronger storms.

weather radar

With radar down, here's how to check for storms near Twin Cities

Your typical go-to radar sites might be down for a few weeks.

weather radar

Duluth weather radar down rest of August; Twin Cities next

Hardware upgrades are taking the weather radars out of service for lengthy stretches.

Twin Cities weather radar picks up 'interesting phenomenon'

The bright colors aren't a signature of rain or thunderstorms.

That isn't rain, it's migrating birds

Weather radars picked up the migration Tuesday evening.

snow, snowplow

Weekend winter storm: It's coming, but where will it hit?

The bulk of the storm could hit Saturday night and Sunday.