Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Still Waters Ice Over -- But, the Birds Adapt!


Geese and ducks adapt to suddenly iced over Reservoir.
Shovelers, geese and mallards cooperating to create open pool of water on the ice.
A little snow to deal with too.
All for one and one for all.
 
"Still waters run deep."
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I can't personally speak to truth of the old adage.
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But for sure, when weather chills, still waters ice over!
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This past Sunday, temperature in New York City plunged to minus one degree.
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But, it was not surprising to find the water at the Reservoir still open and moving.
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In fact, I had predicted such to a friend the night before:
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"It's too windy for the Reservoir to freeze over. The water is moving furiously -- like waves in an ocean."
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However, the following night (Sunday) I predicted the opposite to the same friend:
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"I think the Reservoir will ice over tomorrow, despite the warming temperatures. The water was like a mirror tonight. No movement at all."
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Sure enough, the Reservoir was entirely iced over last night (Monday). 
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The only open water was near the North Gate House where all the ducks, geese, coots and shovelers had gathered tightly together in order to create the open, moving pool.  
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Northern Shovelers are particularly adept in helping maintain open water because they swim constantly in a circle. But the geese and mallards were also cooperating by swimming in the open pool, though with less urgency and speed. There were enough of them to allow for periods of rest and alternations.
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One also got the sense that the geese and ducks were not particularly alarmed with the rapid icing over of the Reservoir as they could feel temperatures rising.
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"We only have to put up with this for a day or two." they said to themselves and each other.
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The birds know when they have to adapt and when they don't.  
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And so it seems the animals know better than we that, still waters belie the freeze occurring underneath, whereas the wind and the fury are predictors of warmth and openness.
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Question is, do these rules of the water also apply to humans? 
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                                                 *******

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