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Rare sea fog blankets city, eastern beaches and Botany Bay

Sydneysiders may have been left scratching their heads early Sunday morning when a mystery haze blanketed parts of the city ahead of a scorching 33C day.

The haze, which has since been revealed as sea fog, stretched about 50km along the coast from the eastern beaches down past Botany Bay, and covered the city skyline and the Harbour Bridge.

Weather bureau meteorologist Helen Kirkup said sea fog occurred when warm moist air flowed over relatively cooler water and condenses to saturation.

She said the “cool little strip of sea fog” also stretched a little way out to sea but didn’t cross the airport.

Dr Kirkup said the sea fog hung around past 8am before it shifted south about 9am and shrank in size before disappearing altogether.

“It doesn’t happen that often,” she said.

“It can happen anytime but if it’s going to cross the land it would be unusual that it would last during the day in summer because land heats up and it will get dissipated.

“Sea fog is a known marine hazard and its not that easy to predict either because of differences in sea surface temperatures.”

The weather bureau said sea fog was relatively rare in Australia but when it did occur it was often widespread and could persist for days at a time.

jack.paynter@news.com.au

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