This Week’s Not So Nasty News

. . . . from John, awaiting Nancy’s draft of her week’s news.

Item #1: How’s your weather?

Much of the USA and Europe have been dealing with nasty weather.
We seem to be in a pocket of tranquility.
It is March, and March’s weather is said to arrive like a Lion with a thorn in its paw.
We have had a bit of snow that quickly melted. By mid-morning Friday the sky was mostly clear with a few clouds. Temperature at the EBRG airport hit 46°F this afternoon.
What’s not to like?
Sorry for the rest of you. Ya. Right.

Item #2: Until I got to ‘rats’, I thought this was a good story

From Eugene, OR came this story about a female turkey and her brood taking up residence in the City. The term “gangster” turkeys was used. That’s a play on the collective noun for a group of turkeys. In flight, birds are usually called a flock, but on the ground three terms are used for turkeys: rafter, gang, posse.
So. I was following this story thinking it might be interesting. Then there was this line: “The wild turkeys, along with a burgeoning population of rats . . .
So never mind. Links here:
Youtube video

A more interesting collective noun is ‘parliament’, as in – – –A parliament of Burrowing Owls – Florida.
(Photo: Tania Thomson)
More names here

Item #3: Why is Heather smiling?
By using high-resolution satellite imagery, Stony Brook University ecologist Heather Lynch and others discovered the population of
Adélie penguins to be 53% larger than had been estimated 20 years ago. They now think there are 4.5 million breeding pairs.
A few years ago a number of places where penguins had been in large numbers had none. There have been some ice flow movements in those areas and the animals either left or died. Researchers don’t know. The current story involves penguins inhabiting newly discovered breeding sites in the Danger Islands of Antarctica. There sea ice typically isolates the nesting area from fishing fleets intent on harvesting the krill on which the well dressed birds depend.
“When they examined old aerial photographs of the region taken in 1957, they found evidence that the penguins were already in residence on the islands.

Perhaps a “waddle” of penguins?
“All the evidence suggests that population there has been stable since the late 1950s,” Dr. Lynch said.”

Heather Lynch has been the lead researcher for this project. The photo was taken on a nice day in Antarctica, with numerous penguins behind her. Worth a smile.

Item #4: About Jim Palmer
If you are/were a baseball fan you likely know of the Baltimore Orioles’ pitcher Jim Palmer.
Maybe you knew he as adopted. Nah, me either.
At age 7 he learned he was, and at age 72 he learned more.
Here’s the story: It’s complicated

Item #5: Cherry blossoms

Not the ones in our yard, but part ours nonetheless.
If our trees produce cherries it is not until the first week of July. Also, that week, our Mariposa lilies bloom. I wrote “if” because many years we do not get cherries. At our elevation, clear sky at night can let the temperature drop below freezing. Or wind and rain can destroy the flowers and chase the bees away.
Such problems exist in Washington, D. C., but the National Park Service still tries to predict when you should visit to see the cherry blossoms there.
This year the “best” time is expected to be March 17-20. Others say the 23rd to the 27th. Either will be a bit earlier than average, as was last year. Last year during bloom, many froze. Again?
Here is a site that keeps track of such things, and has nice photos. Click link: Call your travel agent.
Photo from wiseGEEK

And that, for this week, is the not so nasty news.