Should I stay or should I go now?

“One month from the lark to the summer, half month from the finch, from the wagtail a little, from the swallow not a day”. According to this Finnish proverb migratory birds are nature’s own barometer. Even though spring can take some setbacks, the birds return every year. They are on a mission, they don’t waver. To the north! The same can’t really be said about our virtual ghost fishing gear. It seems as if it is having some doubts. Should I stay or should I go now?

Start and end location of the virtual fishing net, 8.4.2022-6.5.2022

Simulation of the drifting of the virtual fishing net, 8.4.2022-6.5.2022

When we last caught up with our virtual fishing net, we saw how it had traveled over 500 km from the southwestern corner of Norway, first towards the coast, and then further to north and into the Norwegian Sea. The journey had taken the net from 58 degrees north to above 62 degrees north, and it seemed that the net was on a mission, it seemed to head to north with such determination. But the following four weeks have not been continuation of this straightforward progress, rather aimless loitering. Not a single point of the compass has been left unexplored, but there has been also occasional, longer sprints into one direction. Over 300 km has been covered even during this period, but the distance between end and starting point is only about 150 km. The overall direction is still towards north, or rather northeast and further into the Norwegian Sea. The net is now a bit over 100 km out to the sea, northwest from the coast of More and Romsdal county. Will it continue along the Norwegian coast to north, or head out further out to the open sea, that remains to be seen…