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Anything outdoors!  Tornadoes, eagles, blizzards, or auroras.  If it is in the sky, running through the woods or swimming in the water, I'm there!

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Saturday, December 1, 2012

December 1 catch up time! Snowy Owl, Eagles and Auroras!

Wow, the last few weeks have gotten away from me so let's get right into it!

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The weather was beautiful back on November 14th!  Highs climbed back up near 50 but the cold days prior (see previous entry) caused some of the small, shallow lakes to ice up.

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Self portrait taken with the GoPro.  So much better than spending the afternoon at my desk.

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The 17th was a bitter sweet day.  What started out with some local eagle viewing in the morning turned a lot more serious when I got a call from The U of MN's Raptor Center to head up to Starbuck to get a snowy owl which had been injured.

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What a beautiful bird.  Unfortunately it had been shot with a small caliber rifle or handgun..  There was no injury to the body but one wing sustained what appeared to have suffered what I thought to be minor damage. Well, I got it down to the clinic the next morning and they confirmed it was a gunshot wound.  Unfortunately the wound included splintering of the bone in the wing.  The bone cells were starting to die.  The owl would have never recovered from this so they made the decision to euthanize the bird.  C'mon.  Really?  Who would shoot a snowy ow?  Absolutely unforgivable.

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The 22nd started out very mild with the temp hitting 60 degrees by late morning.  This is the sunrise over Pelican Lake near St. Michael, MN.

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It was a wonderful morning to shoot.

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LOTS of trumpeter swans moving into the area in front of a VERY strong cold front crashing in from the northwest.

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Seems like every small pond had swans sitting on it.

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The temp dropped like a rock and the snow started flying by late afternoon.  Keep in mind it was 60 degrees earlier in the day.

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Two round of snow came through.

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By the time the snow stopped.  We had just under 2" and the temp had dropped about 40° down to 20 above.  What a crazy 12 hours weather-wise.

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On Sunday enough snow had drifted into the west ditches of north/south orientated roads for some of the local sled heads to run near their homes.  What a weird turkey day.

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On the 23rd Melinda, Cullen and I headed over north of Milaca, MN to see if the CME off the sun 2 days prior would spark at northern lights show.  It happened...but it was very weak.

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Behold the power of moonlight on fresh fallen show.  This was taken at about 10:45 at NIGHT!

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A minor traffic jam on the way home from dropping Cullen off at work on the 24th.

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The 25th Melinda and I went hiking down a long the river.  Saw about 20 deer but no bucks.

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And that brings the calendar up to today.  Cloudy with a tick stratus deck with intermittent drizzle and light rain.  An eagle near the Mississippi River at Becker, MN in central MN.

Getting itchy for the eagles to congregate for the winter.  There was a rumor of over 1000 eagles passing over Alma, WI a couple of week ago but none of the USFWS surveys seem to support this.  Where did the go?  With our crazy rollercoaster temps, they probably disbursed with some moving back up river again!






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