Latest posts by H. Sterling Burnett (see all)
- Environmental Policy Wishes for the New Year - January 18, 2018
- Frog Case Highlights Dangers of and Need to Reform the Endangered Species Act - January 12, 2018
- Trump Needs His Own People Running Federal Bureaucracies - January 11, 2018
Despite Spring having sprung, in some places Winter is lingering with troublesome results.
Heavy snow swept across much of the Rockies during tax week, resulting in multiple multi-car pileups and interstate closures.
ABC news reports, an early spring snowstorm was blamed for crashes involving some 60 cars and trucks on Interstate 80 in southeastern Wyoming. Two dozen people were taken to a Cheyenne hospital. The American Red Cross provided food and shelter to people stranded by the accident.
In Colorado, crashes resulting from snowy conditions also closed portions of Interstate 70. The National Weather Service winter storm warnings and winter weather advisories for southeast Wyoming said up to a foot of snow was possible while Colorado faced more than 2 feet of snow in parts of the mountains. The Weather Service said the late-season storm threatened increase the danger of avalanches.
Winter has also failed to abandon the Maritime regions of Canada. New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Western Prince Edward Island (PEI) were blanketed with heavier than normal winter snowfall (PEI was hit with more than 16 feet of snow). The accumulated snow has failed to melt and leaving wildlife authorities fearing for the health of the region’s deer herd and other wildlife. According to Canada News, More deer are being hit by cars this winter as they search for food near roadways clear of snow.
There are even reports of deer aborting their unborn fawns due to of their inability to find food.
Predators are also suffering as their primary prey, small animals and rodents, have been able to remain hidden below the snowpack while foraging for grasses, resulting in less food for carnivores.
Popular Canadian television wildlife expert, Hope Swinimer, says the winter has been hard on a number of species. Swinimer reports, “We do have a reported incident in which a litter of newborn raccoons were found dead out in the open on a snowbank in the backyard of a caller that can be attributed to the harsh winter impeding wildlife in the search for food.”
In addition, Swinimer has seen “a number of different wildlife species, including bobcats, owls, robins, and woodcocks brought to us for rehabilitation due to the harsh winter.” Swinimer reports there have also been “an abnormally high number” of certain species of migratory birds in jeopardy, most notably robins and American woodcocks. These migratory birds are returning north from long journey’s in their southern wintering grounds expecting open ground to forage for worms and insects so that they can recover from their journey and prepare for breeding and nest building. Instead, they return to the same deep snow and thick ice that has been hindering the predators.”
It seems nature hasn’t heard the news that human caused climate change is making winter’s disappear.