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  1. #1
    Friend of Jimmy K naisme's Avatar
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    Do the birds know something we don't?

    I'm out for a 14 mile jaunt on the Greenway, which sucks at the moment as they are in the midst of working on "high power lines," and a section is cut off so one has to jump the railroad tracks and hit Cedar Lake Rd, which is nice with the wide shoulders, but annoying with hills, and the wind was up today. You also need to keep in mind this is the end of January, in Minnesota, when we usually have our coldest weather. Well, I'm out riding and I see Robins, Mother Nature's sign of Spring being around the corner. I don't think I've ever seen a Robin in January, ever, well in the Texas Hill Country sure, but not MN, not the dead of winter.
    So I start wondering if the animals know something that we don't. I mean the animals knew the Tsunami was coming, it's said that ads for missing animals usually precede earthquakes.
    Anyone want to hazard a guess? Are we getting ready for some polar shift or something? And if Spring is really just around the corner, what is June and July going to be like?
    "I will remain the stranger who came from a faraway land." Lance Armstrong

    "The more you drive, the less intelligent you become." Miller "Repo Man"

  2. #2
    Coyote!
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    Migration isn't an absolute. Think about it this way; it's all about food supply. If there are enough calories near by, why take that dangerous journey south? Lots of birds, including famously the robins will somehow "choose" a few members to stay behind. Here in Western Maryland [nowhere near your level of cold, mind], you'll see robins and their cousins the blue birds in fair numbers all winter in protected spots like flood plains along the upper reaches of the Potomac. There's another 'twist' here, migrants move as individuals AND as population "maps" think of the "map" shifting south, not moving all the way south. Maybe the robin you saw summered in Barrow Alaska [God help him!].

    Winters seem to be getting milder too, so the forage last longer into the winter.

    Looking for some other harbingers? Skunks emerge from hibernation very early. . .cardinals turn on their Spring song mid January here. . .snow drops bloom any day now. . .water maple flower buds swell. I did some work on my beater bike and did a nice dial-back-in run yesterday and saw a ground hog, who hibernates the winter in these parts.

  3. #3
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    We had a report on the local news here in Kansas last night that said this could be the worst year for bugs in history, espescially mosqitoes. Winter left here sometime in December and hasn't been back yet. This was the warmest January in recorded history.



    The animals know it's warm. We know it's warm. Why? Who cares? I personally am very grateful since i ride every day. January and Feb are usually the worst months to ride in since I start to tire of the cold.

  4. #4
    Designated Drinker Wulfheir's Avatar
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    Looking at the map, it's interesting how canada and mexico have a very uniform temperature across the land. You can't keep cocaine and marijuana from crossing the border, but you can sure stop the weather.
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  5. #5
    dangerous with tools halfbiked's Avatar
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    "Do the birds know something we don't?"

    Yes. The Cardinals' spring song provided a lovely background as I read the paper on Sunday. And like Ranger said, who cares? Hey, I live 1000 miles from rising sea levels...

  6. #6
    Senior Member GreyGoat's Avatar
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    I wish it was that easy but I fear it will not be.. rising sea levels will have ramifications much further reaching than to just those wading thru it.. but for now I like the warmer weather to ride in, tho rain sucks compared to snow in general..
    We had a similar year in 95, maybe not this warm, but with heavy snow years in 94 and 96, 95 had nothing for snow for the most part.. it will be back next year and we will again be laughing about global warming...

  7. #7
    Sensible shoes. CastIron's Avatar
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    I keep wondering: Is this just a dud of a winter or is the 'other shoe' going to drop in Feb-Mar?
    Mike
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    It looks silly when you have quotes from other forum members in your signature. Nobody on this forum is that funny.
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  8. #8
    dangerous with tools halfbiked's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CastIron
    I keep wondering: Is this just a dud of a winter or is the 'other shoe' going to drop in Feb-Mar?
    I hope snow. That was a freudian slip. I hope so, I want the snow. Round these parts it probably won't get too cold, but Feb & Mar are usually the big snow months.



    Quote Originally Posted by greygoat
    wish it was that easy but I fear it will not be.. rising sea levels will have ramifications much further reaching than to just those wading thru it..
    yeah, I was being facetious.

  9. #9
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    I'm in central Alberta (Canada) and I rode a century in the middle of December, and then again on January 1st. Both times I saw a field FULL of Canadian Geese.

    I have NEVER seen Canadian Geese in Canada in the middle of winter before!!


    But then it has been an exceptionally mild winter here. We've got no snow!

  10. #10
    totally louche Bekologist's Avatar
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    There have been major shifts in bird migration patterns in the last 40 years.

    Ornithologists have a series of suspected culprits including human population patterns, pollution, global warming, changes in habitat and food supply, etc...
    "Evidence, anecdote and methodology all support planning for roadway bike traffic."

  11. #11
    The Land of Living Skies
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    Quote Originally Posted by Machka
    I'm in central Alberta (Canada) and I rode a century in the middle of December, and then again on January 1st. Both times I saw a field FULL of Canadian Geese.

    I have NEVER seen Canadian Geese in Canada in the middle of winter before!!


    But then it has been an exceptionally mild winter here. We've got no snow!

    Believe it or not, we have Canadian Geese that winter here every year. So far this year they definitely were the smart geese of the bunch. Other years when it is -30C, I would think it would be worth it to migrate.

    Some differences with the warm temperatures this year....it has not been warm enough to really cause any melting (about -5 or so since early Dec). The days that have been warmer have changed any snow packed surface to sheets of uneven ice. Everyday I am thankful for my Nokians.

  12. #12
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SaskCyclist
    Believe it or not, we have Canadian Geese that winter here every year. So far this year they definitely were the smart geese of the bunch. Other years when it is -30C, I would think it would be worth it to migrate.
    I do believe it .... it's because they heat the lake in Wascana park.

  13. #13
    Sophomoric Member Roody's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=Machka]I'm in central Alberta (Canada) and I rode a century in the middle of December, and then again on January 1st. Both times I saw a field FULL of Canadian Geese.

    I have NEVER seen Canadian Geese in Canada in the middle of winter before!!


    But then it has been an exceptionally mild winter here. We've got no snow![/
    QUOTE]
    Yeah, usually you send all those flying pigs down here to the US.

    I am really bummed out about the weather. I finally got studded tires and I wanted so bad to ride for miles on the frozen Grand River. so far all the tires have been good for is building leg strength. Maybe next year!


    "Think Outside the Cage"

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