Saturday, September 16, 2006

Rain, no broadwings

The photo is of raindrops on white pine needles. Today was supposed to be clear. Heck, yesterday was supposed to be clearing and mostly nice. It's still raining.

I’m starting to think my idea of a diminished food source as the cause for the early broadwing migration in the east was premature. So far today is still foggy and misty. In other words, it’s not very good migration weather. I’m already doubting the “clear” forecast for tomorrow.

So perhaps the real answer to the reason for the early migration is a prolonged bout of poor weather, and the birds felt compelled to move when they knew it was clear. This, naturally, begs the question of how birds in northern Canada know that the east coast of the U.S. is going to be weathered out for the next week, when forecasters with computers can’t?

I’m pretty good at watching the sky and telling when bad weather is going to arrive, but once I’m in the middle of the bad weather, I find few clues to tell me when it’s going to end. When bad weather is moving in I can see the first clouds appear on the horizon and march across the sky until it’s completely cloudy. I can tell, usually, if the storm will be a fast-moving one or one that’s going to be here for a long time. I can tell if the storm will be strong or weak. But when I’m surrounded by low, thick clouds or in the middle of rain or snow, I can’t tell when it’s going to end. And that’s the point I’m at right now. But those broadwings know!! So they flew before all this settled in.

1 comment:

ChicagoLady said...

One of the great unsolved mysteries of the universe!