Despite western Massachusetts’ recent snowfall, this winter still goes on the record books as one of our warmest. While climate change may be contributing, one thing that’s certain is that we’re experiencing the effects of El Niño – but what does that mean? By using online resources and exploring weather science as a whole, families can learn about the local and global effects of this weather phenomenon.
How do spring peepers know when to start singing? How do spring peepers know when to start singing? They don’t have weather reports, or the ability to see the buds forming on trees, the snow melting, or teens walking around in shorts and T’s when it’s 40 degrees and climbing. Certainly, there are scientific reasons that explain how peepers know when to announce the return of the sun and the warmth; but… Read More
Winter Otters It’s the end of winter (almost), when months of frigid winds have whipped the bare hills and leafless trees into a freeze-dried state. The best loggers cut trees for firewood now, just before the March thaws, because the ground is frozen and the green wood is at its driest, all the sap stored underground (Think maple syrup!). How wonderful and wise and tough are the trees, an example for us… Read More
Clouds are Rivers Rains become rivers, so—if we think of the whole instead of the parts—clouds are rivers. How very unscientific is such a thought! If everybody thought clouds are rivers, how would we distinguish between them? Wouldn’t reality become an un-focus-able blur? Maybe! That could be a very healthy development, if it allowed us to reboot our way of categorizing, and comprehending, the parts that make up the whole of our… Read More
When Our Wetlands Become Icelands Perhaps you love to walk in the woods in winter because, when the leaves are down, the shape (or “geomorphic character”) of our biome is exposed. I do, too! Winter is possibly the most perfect time to get to know where you are. When you look up at the hills from down in the valley, or from hills to other hills, there is more to see of… Read More
Cloud Rover Observers Wanted As Citizen Scientists What shapes do you see in the clouds? There may be rabbits, eggs, vines, airplanes, and shoes… and no matter what you see in the sky, NASA wants to hear about it! The organization’s S’COOL program uses data provided by Citizen Scientists, as well as official weather reports, to track cloud cover across the country. By collecting data on the type of clouds, the height… Read More