What makes a monsoon?

Question Answered by Kurt Buffalo, Meteorologist, National Weather Service-Pocatello We often hear about monsoon moisture or monsoon storms during the summer months. So what exactly is the monsoon, and what causes it? The term “monsoon” refers to a seasonal wind shift, which brings a change in moisture and precipitation patterns. There are several different monsoon…

What makes a heat wave?

Question Answered by Nicole Desmet, Meteorologist, National Weather Service-Pocatello, Idaho A heat wave is simply a period of prolonged period of very hot, uncomfortable temperatures. Typically a heat wave lasts two or more days. Several factors can influence how hot temperatures can get, where temperatures will be warmest and how long it will be that…

Why are bumblebees hairy?

Question Answered by Cory Braastad, Biological Field Technician, INL ESER Program Bumblebees are large, gentle giants of the bee world. They are actually the largest of the bees. Bumblebees are excellent pollinators. It’s actually the females that do most of the pollinating. Their coats are especially furry. This means their coats easily pick up pollen,…

We’ve been having a lot of wind this past week. What happens to make the wind speed faster than normal?

Question answered by Jason RichMeteorologist, NOAA ARL Field Research Division Spring is typically windy as we transition from the cool season to the warm season. Uneven heating of the Earth’s surface creates differences in atmospheric pressure across the globe. When differences in the pressure exist, winds flow from the high pressure to the low pressure.…