is starting to wear me down! Typically in this part of the state we have an average high/low of
90 and 70, and it's the humidity that really socks it to you. While the term "humidity" is a good way
to look at it, and "dew point" is actually better. The dew point combines the temperature and humidity,
and demonstrates more of an actual feel to the human body.
In the summer, our oppressive days have a dew point of 70 or higher, and combine that with a temperature
of 95 degrees, your feel-like temperature is over 100 degrees. Our dew points this year have been consistently 72-74, which doesn't sound like much of a difference, but trust me...it is! A heat advisory is issued for a feel-like temperature in excess of 105 for more than three hours, and lately we have had a few of these days.
We had a nice late spring and early summer, with adequate moisture, and relatively cooler temperatures, however since mid July, the heat has been turned up a notch! And it wears on you! Yardwork is completed early in the day. Any birding I do, is done early. Exercising is done inside on the treadmill, or done early in the morning, or later in the evening.
The vegetation around the house is suffering too. My fescue grass was in really good shape, until about the 2nd week of July. I was proud of that, because usually the grass takes a turn for the worst by June 1st. But this year the rainfall amounts were above normal early on in the warmer months. However now, the grass is browning up, the poplar trees are losing their leaves slowly, and my precious dogwood trees are suffering too. The leaves are turning brown, but the berries are not affected as of yet. All of the mature vegetation will be ok, but I have to water the young stuff.
And as for the birds...the activity is SLOW! Spring and fall migrations are the best times in my yard, and my bird species counts touch 70 in May and October. June and July on the other hand doesn't get too much north of 40 species. The number goes up in August due to a late in the month cold front, that typically signifies the start of the migration for warblers. My record is 55 for August, however I usually top out around 50.
I can wait to see that forecast for a significant "cool front" in late August! The last two years it has been on August 24th and 25th respectively, and I got my initial look at Blue-winged, Chestnut-sided, Magnolia, and Black and White warblers. My first fall Scarlet Tanager came in as well. We're only a couple of weeks away now, and I'm counting down the days to slightly cooler nights, and the start of fall migration.