Can birds predict weather?

dereks(6 Utah)February 3, 2008

Yesterday the birds were VERY active at the feeder, more than usual. This morning the weather is horrible. Very heavy snow and strong wind. I know we have had snow all winter but the storm this morning is really making an impact.

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stevation(z5a Utah)

I'm sure they can sense a dropping barometric pressure, and maybe that was happening. I know fish sense that (I'm a fisherman), and they often stop biting when a storm front is coming. Now, that's the opposite of what you saw with the birds, though!

    Bookmark   February 6, 2008 at 12:04PM
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kliddle(6b)

i can predict weather. i get a migraine 24-48 hours before storm. not every storm gives me a headache, but every migraine is followed by a storm. the speed and intensity of the pain is reflective of the storm. so if the most ill-adapted creature on the planet can sense a storm, i am sure the birds can. i get headaches, they get munchies...can i trade? makes sense that they might try a little harder to find food if they might not be able to for a few days.

another thought is that generally our storms come from the south and are preceded by warmth. it could be they are more active because of the calm before the storm, i know i am.

on a similar not. last year i was walking down the street and heard a strange noise that snapped me out of whatever strange thoughts were occupying my attention. i am almost embarassed to say the strange noise was birds, had forgotten what it sounded like to hear nature after last years bitter cold. it was a very cold day i might add. the flock of no less than 100 robins was something i had never seen before. i remember thinking it was awfully cold and early for robins and maybe it was a sign that winter was over. spring started 45 minutes later and summer 15 minutes after that. seriously though the next day was about 30 degrees warmer and we had that month of spring before that odd cold snap back to winter than killed 3 of my fruit trees that were in full bloom and probably the flock of robins too. seems like the birds know something we don't (except last year that is).

    Bookmark   February 22, 2008 at 11:32AM
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dereks(6 Utah)

kliddle, that's awful about the migrains. My wife gets them too. They're horrible for her.

Yesterday the birds were very active in the yard. Today with this small storm moving by, I have seen fewer birds.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2008 at 12:46PM
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songbirdmommy(UT 5)

Today, just SE of Hill AFB, There was a HUGE mass of birds, about a mile wide and arout 1/4 mile deep. It was amazing to see!
The entire sky was darkened by the mass!
It was eerie to watch them twist and move as they flew through the sky.
I am glad that the jets were not flying today.... that would have been disastous!

If today's bird movement predicts the weather, we are in for a doozy!
But, since I am a meteorolgist, I can tell you that we are not in for wild weather... just a little snow in some areas.
I am so SICK of all the snow, but VERY grateful for the snow pack.
Can't wait til the soil starts warming up a little!
There is still almost a foot of snow in my yard, more in some of the shady places.

    Bookmark   March 4, 2008 at 5:48AM
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stevation(z5a Utah)

Wow, my snow melted last week, so I can see all my grass now. You must be up on the hill, Songbirdmommy. Are you actually a meteorologist? I've often thought that would have been a fun career, especially now, if one had the opportunity to do research on climate change.

Can you tell what kind of birds those were? I remember last summer a few times driving home from work and down around Midvale or Sandy, there these huge flocks of dark-colored birds just undulating through the sky. Probably thousands of them. I thought they might be starlings (darn pesky invaders), but I wasn't sure. It's amazing to watch those flocks; it's almost like a lava lamp, the way they twist and turn randomly.

    Bookmark   March 4, 2008 at 12:02PM
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dereks(6 Utah)

I think all those dark colored birds are starlings. They tend to fly in large groups. Unfortunately, they have discovered my yard.

    Bookmark   March 4, 2008 at 2:52PM
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