Winter Nature Almanac – January 2020

birds_cardinal_dark-eyed_junco
A male Cardinal and sparrows eat at my feeders in winter.

Here in Philadelphia…

This winter nature almanac has nature journal activity and nature journal prompts.

It is cold but not as cold as it usually is. The days are clear and cold or overcast and cold. Sometimes it rains. But, snow? We haven’t seen and accumulation at all this season.

It is too cold to stay outside for very long. As I walk to my car in my driveway, I see many plants and other objects I want to draw. I spied an egg case suspended from my blueberry bush that I want to examine.

I see people’s winter photos online and hope I get to take a snow scene this season. But then I look at the bright sunshine and think fat chance.

Is there any particular thing you want to observe? Let me know in the comments down below.

Did You Know?

In the Old Farmer’s Almanac the right hand calendar pages note the dates when the moon rides low and high.

When the Moon rides high…

“the date of the high begins the most likely 5-day period of earthquakes in the northern hemisphere…  The moon rides high on January 10, 2020.

When the Moon rides low…

the date of the low indicates a similar 5-day period in the southern hemisphere (when earthquakes are likely)” – The  moon rides low January 22, 2020.

When the Moon is over the equator…

“two the days each month when the Moon is at the equator, indicating the most likely time for earthquakes in either hemisphere.” The moon is at the equator January 2nd , 16th, and 30th.

The Old Farmer’s Almanac, 2020, p. 118

See the (Amazon.com link) for dates for the rest of 2020.

 

 

Winter Nature Almanac: Season Dates

  • Winter Solstice December 21
  • Groundhog Day/Imbolc – February 2nd   
  • Spring Equinox – March 19, 2020 at 11:50 p.m. EDT
  • Winter last 89 days, 0 hours from the Winter Solstice until the Spring Equinox
  • January 23rd – January thaw traditionally begins about now
the moon in a winter evening sky

Winter Nature Almanac: In the Sky This Month

  • 2nd – First Quarter Moon
  • 10th – Full Wolf Moon
  • 17th – Last Quarter Moon
  • 24th – New Snow Moon

 

  • The New moon always rises near sunrise
  • First Quater near noon
  • Full Moon always rises near sunset
  • Winter Full Moons are high in the sky
  • Last Quarter near midnight
  • Moonrise occurs about 50 minutes later each day

sky_circumpolar stars
Circumpolar stars in the night sky.

Winter Nature Almanac: Winter Constellations

Circumpolar
Constellations (from latitude 40 degrees N
Ursa Minor
Ursa Major
Camelopardalis
Cassiopeia
Cepheus
Draco
Winter
Constellations in the Evening Sky
Northern Sky Southern Sky
Pegasus Cetus
Andromeda Taurus
Pisces Orion
Triangulum Eridanus
Aries Lepus
Perseus Canis
Major
Auriga Monoceros
Gemini Canis
Minor
Cancer Gemini
Hydra

 

Best Fishing – When the Moon is between New and Full

  • January 1-10
  • January 24 – February 9

A sparrow on an icy ledge
A sparrow on an icy ledge

Winter Nature Almanac: Birding This Month:

Winter Nature Almanac: Animals Activity

Tree bud in winter. Photo by Donna L. Long.
Tree bud in winter. Photo by Donna L. Long.

Winter Nature Almanac: Plant Activity

Study Winter Twigs: Nature Journal Activity

 

Nature Journal Prompts for Winter

Winter Nature Journal

ice covered tree branches
Ice and snow-covered deciduous tree with a blue sky

Articles on Winter from Around the Web

Winter the Coldest Season (Live Science) https://www.livescience.com/25124-winter.html

Was this forecast accurate? Winter Winter Outlook: Warmer than average for many, wetter in the North

https://www.noaa.gov/media-release/winter-outlook-warmer-than-average-for-many-wetter-in-north

Winter Weather Terms https://www.weather.gov/otx/Glossary_of_Weather_Terms

Winter Citizen Science Events

Journey North

Project FeederWatch

Christmas Bird Count

Project Budburst (year-round)

In the cold of January, spring seems a long way off. But after the end of this month, comes February 1st and Groundhog day. Which means spring is just around the corner.

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