Bill Thrune - USFWS
Spring's Journey North
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Journey North News will be posted on Mondays
February 1, 15, Mar. 1, 15, 29, Apr. 12, 26, May 10, 24
Journey North News
- "Signs of Spring" Studies Now Underway!
Please report the unique "signs of spring" from your part of the world! Report your first
singing frogs, earthworms, emerging leaves, flowing sap, melting ice--and other spring events. Monday's "Signs of Spring" updates will incorporate your sightings.
- FINAL Update: Birthday Time!!
Across the Northern Hemisphere it's BIRTHDAY TIME! It isn't just a coincidence that so many
baby animals arrive when there is such an abundance of food. Critters time their reproductive cycle to maximize
the chances of their babies' survival. As we celebrate the renewal of life now taking place all around us, let's
dedicate ourselves to protecting these things we love so much, so that future generations can enjoy them.
- Warblers Return!: May 10, 1999
Tiny but colorful warblers are returning to the north at top speed. What do these little
birds have in common with Bill Cosby and his brother? How can you get a good look at them?
- Mile High Dinners!: April 26, 1999
It's a jungle up there! Many of the birds rushing north right now are fueled by insects. And some
are finding plenty to eat a mile up in the sky! Find out how you can get a first-hand look at some of the insects
- Earthworm Migration Update: April 15, 1999
They only travel a few feet, but earthworms undergo a "vertical" migration each spring
after the ground thaws. Here's a map and data showing where worms have wiggled their way to the surface.
- Swans Moving!: April 12, 1999
Tundra Swans are moving, and Dr. Scott Petrie at the Long Point Bird Observatory in Ontario
has their number! He has placed satellite transmitters on some of them, and is sharing his discoveries with Journey
North! See what Sir Syd and Roast are up to and how far they've flown since mid-March.
- Worms Emerging!: March 29, 1999
Worms are emerging as far north as Minnesota and British Columbia. One fifth grade class
is becoming experts on earthworms. Check out a fun "Can o' Worms" project and see how fast worms can
- Preparing for Spring Whaling: March 26, 1999
Today's unscheduled report brings news from Point Hope Alaska. Temperatures are still well
below zero, but the rapidly lengthening days signal that spring is on the way! How are Eskimo whalers preparing
- Frog Music!: March 15, 1999
Frogs are starting to sing in many locations. What do they sound like? Why are frogs in
trouble? How are scientists helping them? What predators migrate north to eat them?
- Red-winged Blackbirds Return: March 8, 1999
Red-winged Blackbirds are flooding into northern marshes. Why do they return right as ice
is melting? Make a redwing action figure and see what happens!
- News Flash: Ice-Out at Thoreau's Walden
March 1 is the official ice-out date for 1999. Congratulations to Ms. Plenz's 7th grade students
for predicting the date on the nose. Why do you think the average ice-out date has changed since famous naturalist
Henry David Thoreau kept records in the mid-1800's?
- Ducks Migrating and Courting: March 1, 1999
Ducks are migrating everywhere now. Some perform spectacular courtships as well. Why do
we count more males than females?
- Woodcock Dancing at Dusk: February 15, 1999
This little bird may provide a more reliable sign of spring than a groundhog. When it's just barely
light enough to see shadows of distant trees, male woodcocks come out into the open to make their little beeping
sounds and do their mating dance. "The dancer demanding a romantic light intensity of exactly 0.05 foot-candles,"
observed naturalist Aldo Leopold.
- Journey North's 5th Annual Ice-Out Contest
for Walden Pond
Famous naturalist Henry David Thoreau kept ice-out records in the mid-1800's and recorded them in
his celebrated book, Walden. When do you think the ice will melt on Walden Pond this spring?
- First Crows Carrying Sticks: February 1, 1999
During December and January, crows hunker down and concentrate their energy into finding
food and shelter. Watch for their behavior to change as they shift to courting and nesting, they're one of the
first birds to do this each spring.
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