Working on updating my files on Brockdorff-Ahlefeldt, I was doing some digging around looking for specifics on the air bridge and found that, whilst Sydnor (Soldiers of Destruction, The SS Deaths Head Division, 1933-1945 p215 n7) states that;
For the first two weeks of the air supply operation the Luftwaffe managed to deliver more than the daily minimum tonnage calculated by Busch, achieving peak deliveries of 182 tons in 110 flights on February 22, and 286 tons in 159 flights into the pocket on February 23. [b]Thereafter, the weather, Soviet fighters, flight crew exhaustion and a shortage of aircraft caused the deliveries to drop off to a daily average of less than half the minimum requirements for the trapped German forces
citing NA/T-312/556/8167219-7261 (Containing the daily tonnage summaries of the supplies air-delivered by the Luftwaffe to the Demyansk field during February)
Yet, Hooton (Eagle in Flames, The Fall of the Luftwaffe (p173) says that;
By then [The time the pocket was evacuated in January 1943-RFM] Morzik's Gruppe had flown 33,086 sorties, bringing in 64,844 tonnes of supplies and 30,500 men (24,303 tonnes and 15,446 men by 18th May [when a land-link was re-established-RFM.].).
By my calculations, this means that an average of 315 tonnes (310 tons) were delivered every day of the 77 days that II Korps was supplied purely by air, which is actually higher than Sydnor's figures, not "less than half"!
Does anyone have first hand sources that can confirm which is correct?
Also, are there any figures available for losses amongst the Luftwaffe supply formations (Which I presume were bombers as well as JU-52's).
Regards from the Park,