I don't have much to report but that it has been raining almost incessantly for the
last 3 days and it will continue for at least 1 more day. July was one of the wettest
summer months that I can remember since I arrived in Bathurst over 42 years
ago. I am a flower and vegetable gardener and I don't forget these
things. If this continues, August
could be worse. For the last few mornings the day began with heavy fog
and rain. The rain has continued all day in cycles of drizzle, rain and
downpours. This morning by 9:00 we experienced at least the 3rd
downpour since 7:00. Actually it's more like a continuous downpour. The
Weather Network has issued a Rainfall Warning for today and they predicted a
total rainfall of up to 50 mm. I wouldn't be surprised if the total
precipitation this summer will exceed the total precipitation we had this
winter. We had a record snowfall of about 500 cm or 5 m which is
equivalent to over 15 feet of snow or about 2' of rain.
of you that have visited me over the years might remember the small brook
behind the house that barely trickles during the summer months. Well
it's more than a trickle now. The water flow is greater than this
spring's. In 35 years I have never seen so much water in the brook.
In the upper middle part of the photo is submerged a tiny island that is
always accessible during the summer. The photo may not be very
impressive to you but the flow is hundreds if not a thousand times greater
For the last week it has been hard to give the birds
any meaningful exercise. For example, mid afternoon yesterday I
put out the birds out. The rain had stop, the clouds brightened up and a
few patches of blue could be seen between the clouds. The team was very
anxious to get out and flew vigorously for 25 minutes and then out of nowhere
another downpour started. Exercise period barely lasted 10 more minutes.
with this weather, the birds look good. They looked better at this time
but considering the weather we have been experiencing, the vast majority look
fine. As expected some of the strugglers are hoping for a shortened
season. I've seen better droppings this year. With the persistent
humid and wet weather nothing wants to dry; every that can absorb moisture
Environment Canada's present long range forecast for
Truro and throughout the course is for a mix of sun and cloud.
So S5 is tentatively scheduled for that day.
August 12th -
Que Sera, Sera,
Whatever the weather will be, will be
The future's not ours, to see
Que Sera, Sera
What will be, will be
It seems that I have spent most of
the summer evaluating the weather predictions from
several sources. I have come to the conclusion that the best forecast is the
For the last month the normal day
began with fog, mist or light showers then during
most afternoons it rained. Around 9:00 am the fog
left and if we were lucky
we got a few hours break from the rain. The birds
were exercised during this break and often the
exercise was curtailed because of the
rain. The birds have only seen the sun once since the last
race. The best we could hope for were bright clouds
and we got that only a few times.
This morning was a typical morning
Ė fog, mist and light showers. The birds were put out around 9:00 during the
break from the rain and within 30 minutes it began showering again.
By dinner time it changed to an incessant rain and by mid afternoon it became
downpour and it stayed that way until suppertime.
birds are handling the weather better than I am. They have been on 16 hours
of light since June 21st. Approaching the end of July some birds
were showing signs of pin feathers around the beak and eyes and the cover
feathers began to feel looser than normal. Because of the overcast days with
dark clouds Iíve left the lights on all day. Besides this, the birds are fine
considering the weather conditions. Droppings remain small, round and firm
and their appetites are very good.
the weather forecast doesnít change Stage 6 (370 km) will be flown Thursday
from Antigonish. Actually, the release point is about 25 south of Antigonish.
Even though Stage 6 is only 60 km further than stage 5 it can be a very tough
race in the best of weather. This is the first time the birds will be
confronted with the decision to fly over open water or negotiate the longer
route along the coast. On this course I have found that the birds often
fly faster in high ceiling overcast conditions.
The present Environment Canada forecast for the course
is below. The Weather Network predicts more sun and cloud through Nova
Cloudy with 30 percent chance of showers. High 25.
Charlottetown - A
mix of sun and cloud. High 23.
Truro - Cloudy with 30 percent chance of showers. High 25.
Moncton - A mix of sun and cloud. High 25.
Miramichi - Sunny. High 23.
Bathurst - Sunny. High 23.
am prepared to stay longer in Antigonish if the weather worsens. Of course,
that is, if Donna and Ken Gavel are willing to put up with me.