23 February 2015

Ukraine (Україна)

I routinely check the demographics of the viewers of this blog and for the past several months I've noticed an increase in viewers from the Ukraine. A recent check of countries viewing this blog showed the views from the Ukraine out numbered the United States.

Views by Countries

Country Views
Ukraine 38
United States 25
Indonesia 12
Germany 7
Australia 3
France 3
Canada 2
Italy 2
Belgium 1
Ireland 1

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19 February 2015

Ladybug Invasion

During the cold days of winter, people don't normally see too many insects, but for the past few years our house has been the winter resort hangout for Ladybugs (Harmonia axyridis). Ladybugs, also known as the harlequin ladybird and the Asian Lady Beetle, invades homes in the fall in preparation for overwintering.

These beetles would normally hibernate for the winter inside of caves and rocky crevices, but have the tendency to overwinter inside homes, if given a choice.

On the sunny days of winter, these Ladybugs will pace back and forth across windows, "buzz bomb" me and dance across my computer desk.

Some close up views of the Asian Lady Beetle.

15 February 2015

Icy Roads

The back-to-back nuisance snow storms (less than 4 inches) are taking their toll on the township roads and some vehicles. The overcast days and very cold nights have prevented the multiple dustings of snow from melting and caused the anti-skid spread by the township road crew to become encased in packed snow (ice).

Even though the township roads are coated with anti-skid, the crushed stones are embedded in the icy roads. Tracks in the ditch of Joyce Road are evidence of the low coefficient of friction between vehicle tires and township roads, along with the vectored forces of gravity and momentum (Newton's first and second laws of motion) acting on the vehicle's mass.

Most of the township's stockpile of anti-skid has been consumed and another 300 tons of (dry) crushed stone is on order.

12 February 2015

Snow on the Teasel

Most of the spring and summer wildflowers have wilted and faded away, but the Common Teasel (Dipsacus fullonum) can still make a presence in the depth of winter.The nectar rich flowers of the teasel have been replaced with a tough, thorny skeleton of the seed head.

The tough stem and seed head of the teasel isn't going to submit to a little snow.

09 February 2015


After several cold/snowy days, the weather warmed to 42 degrees (F) with 0.21 inches of rain yesterday. Overnight the temperature dropped into the 20's (again) and in the morning everything was coated with a layer of ice.

The weather forecast was for 3 to 6 inches of snow, but we got only an inch or two of snow and the Rome Township road crew worked to keep the roads open.

The Grass Is Always Greener Under The Snow

The snow storms of the past weeks have created several inches of ground cover and some local neighborhood deer have determined that the best meal is under the snow in our backyard. With over an acre of lawn around our house, the deer think the best grass is 15 feet from our patio. This section of lawn looks like it was worked with a roto-tiller.

The view looking down from our deck.

06 February 2015

Brrrrr ... (Again)

It was another very cold night in the neighborhood as the temperature plunged to its lowest recording for this winter, -8.1 degrees (F) at 6:00AM.

The neighborhood deer were out early this evening searching for food to replace calories burned keeping warm last night.

This young guy seems to be enjoying the cold.

05 February 2015

Drifting Snow

In the past week we have received several overnight snowfalls. Each night's snowfalls were only 2 to 4 inches and yesterday I plowed the new snow from this driveway. Last night dumped another 2 inches of snow, but the cold, windy conditions blew the snow into drifts along Joyce Road.

The Rome Township road crew plowed the drifts out of the township roads and the drift would soon reappear. My weather station recorded a wind gust of 28.9 MPH at 2:30PM today

03 February 2015

Neighborhood Deer

Today was bright and sunny, but it didn't feel very warm after this morning's cold single digit temperature. Some of the neighborhood deer looking for a meal and a warm place to stay.

02 February 2015

Groundhog Day

Groundhog's Day is a day celebrated on February 2 and according to folklore, if a groundhog emerges from its burrow on this day and doesn't see its shadow, then spring will come early.

Overnight we received about 7 inches of new snow and the day started out around 30 degrees (F) and I started plowing our driveways with the old John Deere tractor. The snow plowing wasn't bad until about noon when the temperature dropped 12 degrees in 15 minutes and the wind started to howl.

The warm morning temperature started melting the snow on our solarium and them turned it to ice when the temperature dropped.

By the afternoon the wind chill had dropped below zero as the neighborhood deer were looking for a meal.

Groundhog Day 2015: Punxsutawney Phil sees shadow, predicts six more weeks of winter

Happy Groundhog Day!