Birds — Natural Weather Predictors

Birds. There is nothing more peaceful than waking to the sweet sound of birds singing their praise. Or seeing them feather their nests with bits of cozy poodle hair I have dropped behind the deck for this purpose after Pepe, my seventy pound poodle, gets a trim. We have a bird feeder on our back deck where we watch a variety of species of birds argue with the thieving squirrels over the sunflower seeds mixture.  It’s quite a hoot! Although, I have never seen an owl near my home.

Birds can do amazing things but did you know that bird behavior can help us predict the weather? This can be done by closely observing nature and your feathered friends — and you might be surprised by what you learn!

Look up one of these days.  Birds flying high in the sky usually indicate fair weather. As the old adage goes …

  • Hawks flying high means a clear sky. When they fly low, prepare for a blow.

Birds tend to stop flying and take refuge at the coast if a storm is coming. They’ll also fly low to avoid the discomfort of the falling air pressure … which, funny enough, bothers me as well! (I feel it in my bones).

  • When seagulls fly inland, expect a storm.
  • When fowls roost in daytime, expect rain.
  • Petrels gathering under the stern of a ship indicates bad weather.

Birds tend to get very quiet before a big storm. If you’ve ever been walking in the woods before a storm, the natural world is eerily silent! Have you experienced this? I have and it is very disturbing. Birds also sing if the weather is improving.

  • Birds singing in the rain indicates fair weather approaching.

Here are more bird proverbs and prognostics. Test it out for yourself and see how well the predictions turn out. This is a fun activity to do with the kids as well. It teaches you to slow down and pay attention to your surroundings.

  • If crows fly in pairs, expect fine weather; a crow flying alone is a sign of foul weather.
  • The whiteness of a goose’s breastbone indicates the kind of winter: A red of dark-spotted bone means a cold and stormy winter; few or light-colored spots mean a mild winter.
  • Partridges drumming in the fall means a mild and open winter.
  • When domestic geese walk east and fly west, expect cold weather.
  • If birds in the autumn grow tame, the winter will be too cold for game.
  • When the rooster goes crowing to bed, he will rise with watery head.
  • When the swallow’s nest is high, the summer is very dry. When the swallow buildeth low, you can safely reap and sow.

Interesting, right? Visit the Farmer’s Almanac to learn more tips and tricks regarding predictions of weather.

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