28 Nov 2009

Westerlies pushing icebergs further out to sea

10:51 pm on 28 November 2009

The National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA) says strong winds are pushing a group of icebergs further away from the south coast of New Zealand.

The icebergs were first spotted by Australian scientists three weeks ago, floating near Macquarie Island. Maritime New Zealand has been getting regular updates on their position.

NIWA oceanographer Mike Williams says they are now lying about 250km south of Dunedin but being pushed further away by strong westerlies.

He says the maximum size is about 100 metres now.

"They're certainly dropping down to being icecubes."

The icebergs are currently in water with a temperature of about nine degrees, Mr Williams says, and could last for up to one month more before melting away.