A Continuation of the 20+ Years of
April 2021

Today's Picture

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April, April
Laugh thy girlish laughter;
Then, the moment after,
Weep thy girlish tears.

            -- Sir William Watson (circa 1900)

Yes, it's April, but:
No ice out contest. No cabins to be spring cleaned. No pine needles to rake. No docks, boats, or pontoons to put in. Etc., etc., etc. You know the routine; you've been reading about it for years.

The Mississippi Pub re-opens today with full hours after being closed for the winter due to COVID19 concerns. YES!
April 2nd   Note to North Carolina Laurie:   If and when your plan to move to Grand Rapids materializes, however far into the future that might be, should I still refer to you as North Carolina Laurie? Or will you then be Grand Rapids Laurie, or maybe even just Laurie? By the way, HAPPY BIRTHDAY over a week late. I'm sorry. I'm not sorry that you had another birthday, I'm sorry for not acknowledging it in a timely manner. Hope it was a fun one!
April 3rd   Twenty (or so) hours of straight driving is a lot of driving; but "Home again, home again, jiggety-jog".
Easter Sunday   This is really a neat picture. But if you want to hold hands, and if you both need cane, how are you going to carry your drink? Click HERE
April 5th   As per some people living on Little Bass Lake, the ice-out date will be early this year.......possibly even this week. There is some open water near the south end, and a Loon has moved in for the summer. Click HERE.   (Thanks for the picture Randy, who actually got it from Mike.)
April 6th   There's probably not much growing Up North yet, but here there are at least some Crocuses. Click HERE. And besides that, the Frog Serenades have begun.
April 7th   Huzzah!!!! Today is ice-out day on Little Bass Lake!
If you remember (or click HERE if you don't) the lake froze completely on November 30th last fall, which was exactly on the median freeze date. Since the median thaw date is April 20th, it became liquid 13 days earlier than normal. It was frozen for 128 days (141 days was the average). Notice that the average days frozen dropped to 140 but the median freeze and thaw dates remain unchanged. (Thanks again to Randy for watching the ice and filling me in.)

PS:   In the ice-dates page which you clicked on above, you'll notice that the dates and numbers have been updated, but the graph has not. That will be updated just as soon as I re-learn how to make graphs using MS EXCEL. I haven't done that since the Spring of 2018, and at my age it's easy to forget such things, but not so easy to re-learn them.
April 8th   On June 15th of last year, this mother turtle came into the yard and laid her eggs (click HERE). Then this morning, almost 10 months later (about the same time as it takes Up North), this hole, which wasn't there last night, suddenly appeared (click HERE). The ground was very hard until last night's rain storm softened it and probably made it easier for the little guys to breakout. After looking around, I managed to find one of the youngsters (click HERE) and (HERE).

Most literature about these turtles (including Wikipedia) indicate that the eggs will hatch in late August or early September, but a few articles (though very few in fact), mention that in some locations the eggs will remain in the ground until the next spring when the snow melts. That's what happens in Northern Minnesota, and now we can see that it happens down here near the Metro as well.

Note added two days later:   Eventually we found a second underground nest and found at least a half dozen youngsters trying to find their way to the water. Sometime this summer, that "nesting area" will be covered with a cement patio, so it would behoove us to watch for the mothers this June and try to direct them to a different area, or their eggs will be distroyed.
April 9th   One is in the snow in Minnesota and one is in the sand on a beach in Florida. Take your pick: click HERE or click HERE.

Chronicles entry for this day in 1998, twenty-three years ago:
I put a boat in the water this afternoon (the first one on the lake), put a little 9 horse motor on it, and visited a friend at the south end of the lake. I had to break though ice to get to his dock, but I got there, nonetheless.

Note added today:   The "friend at the south end of the lake" was my friend Randy (whom many of you know). He and I used to have a contest to see which of us would get a boat and motor into the lake first. He used to win most of the time, but obviously, in that particular year, I won. However, since he claimed that a small 14-foot boat shouldn't count, I guess it's a matter of opinion who really won. And by the way, the last of the ice went out two days later. Geez, I miss that stuff.
April 11th   This is the door to the Lady's Room in a restaurant in Destin, Florida; the door to the Men's Room is similar. I suppose some people would find it funny, but I'm sure other's would not. What do you think? Click HERE.
April 12th   This is a simple, but still interesting, sunset with low lying clouds, is it not? It was redder than it appears in the picture. Click HERE.
April 13th   There have been no Hummingbird sightings in Minnesota yet, but there have been a couple in Wisconsin already. It's a tad early, but last year they were sighted at several Minnesota locations in late April and Early May, so it's probably not too early to put your feeders out. Click HERE to follow their progress.
April 14th   In the spring I have counted one hundred and thirty-six different kinds of weather inside of four and twenty hours.
-- Mark Twain (circa 1890)

Obviously Mr. Twain was exaggerating a tad, but....... With 84 degrees just a few days ago, and below freezing temperatures (along with a little snow) last night, one could think that maybe he wasn't exaggerating all that much.
April 15th   Here's a question for you bird people:   Do Cliff Swallows and Purple Martins hang around together at times? This Martin house is occupied by lots of Purple Martins, but isn't that a Cliff Swallow sitting on the top left perch (click HERE)? Or is it a female Purple Martin with a reflection from the sun on her forehead? Notice that near the center of the picture there's another bird with a white breast and a glint of white on its forehead, but there are other birds facing toward the sun that don't have a white glint. HERE's a blowup. What do you think?
April 16th   Here's a question for you plant people:   Why is one branch on this Lilac bush full of green leaves, when there aren't even any buds on the rest of the branches, or on any other Lilac bushes in area? Click HERE. At first it looked like a tall weed that had grown up in the middle of the bush, but it's not; it's one single branch of the Lilac bush. If you have an explanation or even a guess, please let me know.
April 17th   A new entry (titled The Mystery of the Dead Bird) has been added to the LBLR "Stories, Poems, & Anecdotes From the Northland" page. It's very short, and it was the Chronicles entry for November 23, 2009, so you might recognize it. The "Stories, Poems, & Anecdotes From the Northland" page is HERE, but you can go directly to the "The Mystery of the Dead Bird" by clicking HERE.

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