Sunday, April 17, 2016

Summer residents showing up, ice-out two weeks

Red-sided garter snake

White-throated sparrow
Cork and I saw these sure signs of summer on our walk today. The red-sided garter snake, basically Northwestern Ontario's only snake and completely harmless, had come out of hibernation and was looking for some action with members of the opposite sex.
The white-throated sparrow is the bird that makes the mournful calls you hear everywhere in the summer, especially in the mornings and evenings. If you hear one calling in mid-day it just about always means it is going to rain.
The weather here in Nolalu has been spectacular this week with highs in the mid-20s C (70s F). Red Lake has been cooler but still fairly decent except for yesterday and today when it has been getting freezing rain. That was good because the lake was right on the boundary between rain and about 10 inches of snow.
I checked out Whitefish Lake near Nolalu today and it is still frozen shore-to-shore. With all the warm temperatures we're getting -- which have almost wiped out the snow -- I would guess Whitefish could break up in 7-10 days. I haven't seen Red Lake but considering the temperatures in the forecast it will probably go about May 1.
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