WHAT WINTER? Just kidding, but still things have been surprisingly mild. Temps dip today and tomorrow and head for a weekend slide, when we might touch zero again. In the meantime, we review our WSI score as we sneak our way to the middle of January.
Featured Photo: There’s not much snow on the ground, and habitat remains open for wildlife.
WEATHER (Bismarck Forecast):
Today: Wed 1/16 – Chillin’ – Hi 12, Lo 4, Wind SE@10
Tomorrow: Thu 1/17 – Cloudy – Hi 15, Lo 11, Wind N@9
SOLUNAR (Bismarck Times):
Moonrise Moonset Overhead Underfoot
1:37PM 3:19AM 8:58PM 8:32AM
Moon Phase: Waxing Gibbous (75% Full)
EDGE HOUR: 1:00-2:00PM. Moonrise and the warmest temps of the day will help with the bite in today’s Edge Hour.
We’re now 37.5 percent of the way through winter on the DEO Winter Severity Index Calendar (I know, exciting!). This tracker provides an idea of what wildlife are up against and serves as a survivability predictor for the season, with one point assigned for each day we touch zero or lower, and one point for each day there’s 10 inches of snow on the ground or more. By now you know our thresholds for winter (Dec. 1 – Mar. 31) severity are as follows: Mild <50 points, Moderate 50-90, Difficult 91-140, Severe 141+ out of a total of 242 possible points for the four-month period.
As we’re halfway through January our update covers Dec. 1 through Jan. 15, and with a good stretch of above-average temperatures to start the new year off, wildlife are faring quite well. With only New Year’s Day going below zero in the last two weeks, and the post-holiday snow mostly melted by three days in the high 40s and 7 days over freezing in the last fortnight, ground cover holding steady at about an inch has not been an issue. Fields are generally open and cover is readily available for deer and upland game.
So with one point for cold and no points for snow, that brings the Winter of ‘18-19 to a reassuring total of 4 out of a possible 92 points at just over the 1/3-mark for Bismarck. Still some winter left to watch out for, but it has been an easy start for wildlife.
Current WSI Score as of January 15: 4/92 = Mild.