reply to post by Kantele
Thanks for your comments. I didn't give much of my opinion about the birds in my first post as I was more focused on posting some references. Now I'd
like to say that while I agree with you that some birds are perhaps not seeing their way as they used to, there could well be other factors at work
here that are confusing them.
It's fairly well known that the north magnetic pole (which actually has south polarity) is moving and has been doing so for a long time. (The south
magnetic pole is also moving.) It's possible that in the past, birds and other migratory animals that sense magnetic fields to guide them on their
way, were able to adjust for this movement as it was fairly gradual. However, from what I've been reading lately, there is a body of empirical
evidence that this movement is speeding up, when compared with past records of magnetic north's location year-on-year. And this
could mean that
some migratory animals are not able to adequately compensate and are getting lost and confused.
However, as I said, even these magnetic variations on their own might not be enough to throw the birds off course. The rather variable weather in many
places -- as also anecdotally reported here by ATS members -- could also be a factor. On its own this variation might be something they could deal
with, but when combined with the increasing rate of movement of the magnetic field it could be overwhelming their abilities to navigate.
Then there is the increasing amount of human-created EM radiation all over the place. The transmitter towers and repeaters that are used to broadcast
various frequencies for mobile phones, TV, radio and so on, along with such things as meterological radar... Who knows? If some of these animals are
also sensitive to some of these frequencies, it would just make their lives even more difficult.
Put it this way: I can't imagine that all the extra energy we are throwing into the atmosphere every second of every day can be of any real benefit to
birds and other sensitive animals. They are now getting bombarded with a huge range of frequencies at levels of intensity that didn't even exist a
Now, some observations from here in the Czech Republic. In regards to animals and the weather, I have a few items to share. One is from August. My
wife and I spent a couple of weeks at a friend's cottage in a small town in the west of the country, and the weather was rather cool for the time of
year. Most days were well under 20 deg C, when normally we'd expect about 10 deg C warmer than that. It often rained and was pretty miserable weather
for what's supposed to be summer. But the oddest thing was that the swallows were already flocking, which they always do prior to heading off on their
We talked to the old lady across the road, who had lived in the town her whole life. (Not sure of her age but her daughter's already on an aged
pension so she had to be pushing eighty at least. Still sharp as a tack, too.) She told us that whenever these birds flocked early it meant that a
hard winter was coming. However, she'd never seen them flock that
early and she was very concerned.
A couple of days later she told us that she'd ordered extra firewood for winter.
I've learned the hard way that it pays to take notice of older folks who know more about things like this than I do, so I'm expecting this winter will
not be better than the last one, which turned out to be the hardest we've had here in quite a few years.
Now here's the other side, the really confusing side of all this. Last weekend my wife and I were at our own cottage in the Czech Highlands (Ceska
Vysocina). It was chilly but not really cold, and no snow was around. Just rain. So we went for a walk by the lake that's just a couple of minutes
from the cottage. And there, we saw a large frog slowly making its way across the road. When it saw us it "froze" as some frogs do, so I picked it up
and we took it over to the grass by the lake. And we could hear more frogs, croaking away. It was a weird feeling because we've never seen or heard
frogs this late in the season. I mean, there are virtually no flying bugs around for them to eat at this time, which is why they're normally burrowed
down deep in the ground and hibernating.
So -- the swallows left at least a month early, but the frogs are still out. It's all mixed up. Even compared to just a decade ago, things are simply
here. To relate it to what other members have been saying in this thread and elsewhere, it's not like we can just look at data for
weather, or just review past records for bird migrations or whatever. It's all changing and the variables and whys and wherefores are now getting too
complex for us to ascribe a single cause.
It's just all messed up.
edit on 25/11/10 by JustMike because: Oh tempores, Oh mores, O typos!!