Nature Notes

By Greg Lecker

It’s almost as if the sun is rising again. An hour ago, dawn broke onto a partly cloudy sky. Now, the heavens have clouded over and the sun is struggling to shine through a small opening.

It’s not your imagination.  January 2020 has been deemed the gloomiest January in Minnesota since 1963 – so says the University of Minnesota St. Paul Campus Climate Observatory, which began track the amount of sun that year. I’m not certain that February has been that much better; though I do recall at least several days of sun – and temperatures certainly seem to be above normal.  The birds – chickadees and turkeys, at least  — have been calling.

Speaking of skies and birds, have you noticed flocks of crows lately.  This massing behavior is known as “roosting.” Crow roosting numbers peak in winter; and then decrease near the…

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