Wettererkundungsstaffel 27

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Wettererkundungsstaffel 27

Unit Code: (Q5 + )


Formed 9 June 1943 at Athens-Tatoi/Greece by renaming Westa 26/1 (a.k.a. Westa 261, Wetterkette Kreta) and augmenting to Staffel-strength. Equipped on formation with 12 Junkers Ju 88s. [1]

Eastern Mediterranean and Balkans

6/43: operating under Fernaufklärungsgruppe 4 (FAGr. 4)/X.Fliegerkorps and Luftwaffenkdo. Südost, the Staffel generally flew one long weather reconnaissance flight over the eastern Mediterranean each day and, if required by higher authority, other non-weather recce flights in the same general area. Enemy convoy movements in the eastern Mediterranean were also observed and reported. [2]

16.6.43: (Südost) - Ju 88 D-1 "Trop" ditched in the Med northwest of Rhodes due to engine failure while on a transfer flight from Crete to Rhodes, 100%, 4 injured but rescued.

13.9.43; (Südost) - Ju 88 A-4 (5M+Y) failed to return from a flight over the area west of Cyprus, 100%, 1 KIA and 4 MIA. The aircraft, identified as a D-1 in other sources, was shot down at low altitude by 2 South African Air Force Beaufighters while searching for a missing plane and crew from 2.(F)/123. All 4 of the Wekusta 27’s crew were rescued by the British and made POWs. [3]

1.10.43: (Südost) - Ju 88 A-4 crash landed at Fp.Athens-Tatoi and severely damaged.

4.10.43: (Südost) - Ju 88 D-1 destroyed during Allied air attack on Athens-Tatoi, 100%.

14.12.43: (Südost) - Ju 88 A-4 damaged during Allied air raid on Athens-Tatoi, 20%.

1.5.44: at Athens-Tatoi with 6 Ju 88 A-4s on strength. [4]

9.5.44: (Südost) - Ju 88 A-4 (Q5+F) shot down by a RAF Beaufighter SW of Crete while flying a combined maritime and weather recce, 100%, the crew spent 4 days in a life raft before being picked up by a British rescue launch. [5]

2.6.44: Ju 88 ditched south of Greece, 100%, crew rescued. [6]

7/44: another Ju 88 was lost when it ditched due to engine failure, 100%, 2 drowned and 2 rescued. [7]

10.9.44: Staffel now at Belgrade-Zemun/Yugoslavia, having been ordered to transfer there from Tatoi on 1 September. Missions now focused on reconnaissance in support of ground forces retreating from Romania, Bulgaria and Greece. Two Ju 88 D-1s were lost on these missions to unknown causes, one on 10 September and the other on 12 September. [8]

10/44: Wekusta 27 credited with 1,135 operational missions since its formation on 9 June 1943. [9]

4.10.44: elements transferred from Zemun to Zagreb-Lucko. [10]

30.10.44: now at Szombathely/W Hungary - ordered this date to suspend operations with Ju 88 T-1s and T-3s and hand these over to Aufklärungsstaffel 2.(F)/11 at Szombathely. While here, the Staffel lost 5 aircraft on the ground as a result of low-level attacks by Allied aircraft on 21 and 31 October. [11]

28.11.44: a Ju 88 belonging to Wekusta 27 reportedly crashed, 100%, crew KIA, no further details. [12]

15.12.44: Westa 27 disbanded at Szombathely, reportedly due to losses, and the remaining personnel reassigned to 2.(F)/11. Its main claim to fame was that it was the only weather Staffel whose Staffelkapitän received the coveted Ritterkreuz (Hptm. Bonath).[13]

FpN: Wekusta 27 (L 53048).


Hptm. Hans Bonath (6/43 - 12/44)

Special Note:

The history of the Luftwaffe Weather Service, this Staffel, all of the other Staffeln, the Wetterflugstellen, the Wetterketten and all other components engaged in meteorological reconnaissance activities are covered in extensive detail in: Kington, John A. & Franz Selinger, WEKUSTA – Luftwaffe Meteorological Reconnaissance Units & Operations 1938-1945, Ottringham/East Yorkshire (U.K.), 2006. Accordingly, rather than repeat what has already been treated in considerable detail, the researcher/reader is encouraged to see this extraordinary study.

© by Henry L. deZeng IV (Work in Progress, 2022).

(1st Draft 2022)


  1. F.Selinger letters of 5 Aug 1992 and 13 Jan 1993; Kington/Selinger – WEKUSTA, p.136.
  2. ULTRA ML5078 and ML5771; Dierich; AirMin; F.Selinger-op.cit.
  3. Kington/Selinger – WEKUSTA, p.136.
  4. ULTRA.
  5. AirMin ADI (K) 235C/44; Kington/Selinger – WEKUSTA, p.137.
  6. Kington/Selinger – WEKUSTA, p.137.
  7. Kington/Selinger – WEKUSTA, p.137.
  8. ULTRA HP473; Kington/Selinger – WEKUSTA, p.137-38.
  9. Kington/Selinger – WEKUSTA, p.137.
  10. ULTRA HP2358.
  11. ULTRA HP5121; Kington/Selinger – WEKUSTA, p.138.
  12. Kington/Selinger – WEKUSTA, p.138.
  13. F.Selinger-op.cit.

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