Tag Archives: Weather

Bad day to be a bird

We’ve been having a nor’easter today in the Philadelphia area – lots of rain, lots of wind. There have been wind gusts between forty and fifty miles an hour near here, but that’s nothing. At Cape May – the little finger of land that sticks out of the southeast corner of New Jersey into the Atlantic – the gusts have been over sixty miles an hour. That’s not quite hurricane speed, but it’s plenty fast enough.

Branches and trees and power lines have blown down here and there. But that’s just the sort of thing that happens in a bad storm. No, the most dramatic sight of the day happened in my back yard (that’s my story and I’m sticking to it).

This morning, our holly tree was full of robins feasting on bright red berries. Then came a stronger blast of wind, and one bird was blown sideways out of the tree! His left wing was canted uncomfortably upward while he began desperately flapping his right wing, struggling to get control – and all the while he was moving steadily sideways. I’ve never seen a bird’s face look panicky before.

There is a happy ending – the robin managed to get both wings moving and landed safely on the walk.

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Quote of the day…

…from this evening’s weather report: “You know it’s a cold day when even the Canada geese look cold.” *

Illustrated by someone’s photo of half a dozen geese with their feathers fluffed so much they looked like balls, and with those long necks pulled down somehow to make them look like their heads grew directly out of their shoulders. They did look cold.

* Cecily Tynan, Channel 6, Philadelphia