If you’re collecting Michigan ice caves, you should know that Whitefish Point (up past the Tahquamenon Falls on Lake Superior) has ice caves right now.
View David’s photo background bigtacular and see more in his absolutely stunning Taqhamenon Falls & Whitefish Point – February 28, 2015 slideshow. (seriously, run, don’t walk to see this slideshow!) Lots more from David at his Marvin’s Gardens blog.
March 4, 2015
The Freep has an article about a new animal that is being seen in Michigan titled Michigan’s mysterious, misunderstood coywolves:
…a unique, still relatively unknown and misunderstood hybrid of coyotes known as eastern coyotes or coywolves. They’re mostly coyote, but contain a small percentage of wolf from an unlikely mating of the two species about a century ago. It may sound like an urban legend, but coywolves exist throughout the northeastern U.S. and eastern Canada, and have been confirmed in northeast Lower Michigan through blood-testing and DNA analysis.
Coywolves tend to be a little larger and heavier than their western coyote counterparts, but still well below the size of even the smallest North American wolves. They look like coyotes, though observers often note wolflike characteristics in their faces and fur.
…Coyote expert Stan Gehrt, a professor of wildlife ecology at Ohio State University, rejects the term “coywolf.” He doesn’t even like referring to them as hybrids. It leaves the impression that they are a near 50-50 mix of wolf and coyote, and that just isn’t the case, he said.
“They are eastern coyotes,” Gehrt said. “They aren’t really different from other coyotes, other than they have a little bit of genetic difference. I’ve trapped and tracked hundreds of Midwestern coyotes and a pretty good sample of eastern coyotes in Nova Scotia, and I wouldn’t be able to tell the difference between the two.”
But those, including biologists, who encountered coywolves up close in the Lower Peninsula say they had some wolflike features.
Read on for more including a photo of an actual Michigan coywolf. If you think you’ve seen a coywolf, you can report it online through the DNR or by calling the DNR’s Gaylord office at 989-732-3541, ext. 5901.
If you’re interested in learning more, Meet the Coywolf from PBS’s Nature is a cool profile of this animal that you can watch online for free.
More Michigan wildlife on Michigan in Pictures.
March 2, 2015
The Grand Rapids Press reports that February 2015 was the coldest recorded for the city:
If you were alive in 1978, perhaps the similarity was striking.
Grand Rapids’ average temperature last month was 13.3 degrees, making it the coldest February in the city’s recorded weather history — a record dating back 37 years, according to the National Weather Service. The previous record was a balmy 14.3 degrees.
Overnight low temperatures dipped below zero eight times throughout the month, with highs not able to warm too much beyond the teens. In fact, the thermometer touched the 30-degree mark only four times when the seasonal average is just around freezing.
The Great Lakes region can thank the frequent blasts of arctic air for these records. Visitors to area beaches, too, should give the colder than normal conditions credit for some spectacular scenes of ice formations and caves along the shore.
Much of the state saw a near record cold as well, which has also pushed Great Lakes ice coverage near 90%.
February 28, 2015
February 27, 2015
It looks like we have a little bit of warmer weather on the way, and I hope that everyone has a great weekend!
February 26, 2015
Tahquamenon Falls State Park shares:
If you ever wanted to see the Upper Falls frozen, here is your chance! The water is flowing beneath the ice, but we have never seen the left side frozen over before. Pretty cool!
Cool indeed … downright COLD in fact!
Click to see the photo bigger and to view other photos people took recently, check out several more shots of the falls as they’ve frozen on the Tahquamenon Falls State Park Facebook, and visit the Park’s page at Michigan.gov.
Lots more about the Tahquamenon Falls on Michigan in Pictures!
February 24, 2015
In Great Lakes Total Ice Cover Nears 85% NOAA reports:
The NOAA Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory is showing total ice cover of 84.4% as of February 22, 2015, well above the long term average and closing in on last year’s mark of 92.5% coverage on March 6, 2014. In this image, Lake Erie is a vast white plain, joining Lake Huron and Lake Superior with coverages above 90% and only small areas of open water. This image was taken by the Suomi NPP satellite’s VIIRS instrument around 1803Z on February 23, 2015.
Click through to see it big as the Great Lakes and see more photos of the Great Lakes from high above if you click the “Great Lakes” keyword.