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Phenology with local naturalist Larry Weber every Friday morning at 8:20 on Northland Morning.

Backyard Almanac: January's Run at a Record

A chickadee perched on a small branch in the wintertime
Peter Lewis [Via Unsplash]

All the conversation in December seemed to surround the record snowfall. January is a bit ahead of average for snowfall, but Larry Weber doesn’t think that we’ll set a new marker this month. However, another record is possibly in sight. This January has been inordinately warm. A temperature of 23.8 degrees was the average back in 2006. This year, the coldest temp for January collected by the weather service was one above. “Not a single day of below zero,” says Weber. Precipitation is another story. Due to the amount of rainfall, precipitation is ahead of the usual pace.

”I have been looking at the birds at the feeder.” Says Weber who noticed a trend on mild days. “They really do not need the feeder.” Due to insect activity during warmer days, birds are off hunting for bugs. They return on colder days. “The chickadees, the nuthatches, the woodpeckers and the blue jays all arrived again yesterday.”

And the mammals are active as well. “This is the breeding season for the coyotes,” says Weber, “but there are two others that might have showed up... skunks... and raccoons.” And keep your eyes open for bears; January is the time of year when black bear cubs are born. "A strange time," says Weber, "but that's when it starts to happen."

Luke Moravec is the host for Northland Morning on The North 103.3. He’s also a local actor, musician and writer. He loves puzzles, riddles and fun mysteries.
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