lightning

Lightning Rules Really Work

Lightning deaths have been in decline in the United States for decades.  The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reports lightning deaths of more than 400 per year in the 1940s and 1950s but fewer than 30 per year over the past two decades.  Obviously, this is not because of fewer thunderstorms.  It is not because…
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worms

Slimy Worms Not Native

The recent rainfall brought earthworms out onto the sidewalks. Countless earthworms. Interestingly, these ubiquitous, slimy worms are not native to the Americas.  They actually were brought here from Europe by early European settlers.  They came in ship holds and in transported root balls.  And while they may be good for gardens, they have dramatically changed…
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hot

100 Degrees In April!

Can you imagine 100 degrees on a day in April?  Thirty-six years ago on April 21, it was 100 degrees in Fargo Moorhead.  In the middle of a warm and dry spring, an extremely hot, westerly wind developed, under a large upper level high pressure system.  The combination of subsidence (downward moving air from aloft)…
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frost

Last Frosts

The date of the last freezing temperature in spring is one of the most volatile statistics in the record book.  This is because there are so many factors which can come together to make a late season cold night.  It can be caused by a very cold mass of air getting displaced southward into our…
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la n ina

La Nina Coming

Thursday, the Climate Prediction Center issued a La Niña Watch for this coming cold weather season.  The El Niño appears to be weakening rapidly and this is often a sign of a La Niña the following fall and winter. La Niña is, in many ways, the opposite of El Niño.  Instead of weakening Trade Winds,…
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