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Can you help with my dissertation? Rain severity


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Apologies if this is in the wrong place within the forum.


I am an undergraduate currently writing a dissertation on the impact of weather upon Red Squirrel behavior (red status on the endangered species list within the UK!).


If you were to see it from a more human point of view, it's raining too hard outside at the moment I'm going to give it a minute before I go to the shops, in one of the sections of my dissertation I want to see if the squirrels have this sort of attitude.


So basically I am wanting to measure the severity of the rainfall at the time a Squirrel is spotted.


I was wondering if anyone knew of any methods that have been used or accepted in the past (it would be great if it was in something published like a book):-


(This is just made up off of the top of my head, I want to stress that I am no weather expert)


Drizzle:- makes no noise and has droplets less than 1mm

Light rain:- quiet noise droplets that are about 1mm

rain:- moderate noise, droplets that are up to about 3mm



and so on..


Any suggestions or methods that you or other people may have used is greatly appreciated. 


Thanks in advance for any help.




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  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks

    I will dig out what the Met Glossary gives as explanations on drizzle and rain and intensities. There are quite clearly defined descriptions of these-but not tonight. If I forget please remind me or drop me a pm if you are able to.

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  • Location: Austevoll Kommune North of 60 deg N
  • Weather Preferences: Cold with a metre of lying snow
  • Location: Austevoll Kommune North of 60 deg N



    So to paraphrase: You are asking your observers of Red Squirrels to note the severity of any precipitation co-incidental to spotting a squirrel.


    Surely if you get your observers to note the exact time and grid reference of the observation, you can get the Met Off to cross reference it to the "local" weather radar and get the rainfall rate for that time and place. Other than that you are looking at training your observers on how to determine the broad classification of the rain.


    BTW, I'm not sure the squirrels have the requisite brainpower to work out if the weather will either get better or worse within a given timeframe!



    Good luck with the dissertation

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