Monday, July 6, 2009

Global Warming Means More Coyotes in Minneapolis

Okay, now I've heard everything.

In May I posted about a coyote who jumped our backyard fence and made an appearance on our sport court and how the City of Eden Prairie basically could have cared less. Since then, I had another EP friend tell me that a coyote recently attacked her friend's older dog and it had to be put to sleep.

So I see an article in the Star Tribune today with the headline:

Rabbits, rabbits, everywhere: With so many yard rabbits this year, some homeowners have noted a corresponding increase in predator sightings in the city.

I think, "Interesting, maybe there's some good data on these varmints." A mere 30 seconds into reading the article I see this,

"Where there are lots of rabbits, there are plenty of nibbled gardens, girdled trees and angry homeowners asking: Why so many rabbits, and where will it all end?

Some have a hunch. They point to the weather: Rabbits are increasing because climate is changing and our winters are getting milder. They might be onto something.

Winters have been milder, according to the State Climatology Office. Rabbits might be getting in an extra litter under such conditions. That means more offspring starting down the reproductive path. Soon you have a bunny explosion.

The same paper just reported that 2008 was the coldest year since 1979. Since then, January has been the coldest since 1994. Februray-June has been average to below average temps. The winter prior of 2007-2008 ranked 38th coldest out of 113 years of records in Minnesota.

So "our winters are getting milder" except for the last two winters- which were not-- but the bunnies are overpopulated now-- which would mean that we just had a "mild" winter per the reporter's logic, except that we didn't.

Another great piece of journalism from the Strib.


Goose said...

This is why I don't read the paper.

That being said, another non-scientific analysis of thinking a single issue creates an outcome.

As long as they are talking about "hunches", my sense is that due to the increased development in the Twin Cities the last decade, there is less prairie for the critters to roam and you see them in your yards more often. In Eden Prairie, this is pretty much due to the development of HWY 312 (now 212), Pioneer Trail expansion, Flying Cloud airport expansion, and several residential developments (Bearpath, Entrevaux, Settler's Ridge, etc., etc.).

Rabbits have always pro-created fervishly; it ain't related to higher ground surface temperatures...

Jim said...

I call for a government-sponsored study to determine if we should launch a direct war on bunnies to control the rabbit population or if we should instead subsidize the coyote population to form a proxy army to destroy the long-eared curse. We need action! Spare no expense! Think of all the jobs that can be created as we set out to carefully control the rabbit population. I'm sure our central planners know better than mother nature.

Sheila said...

Jim- you have me laughing!!

Goose said...

Another reason Cap and Trade is just a tax increase and will have no impact. Gotta love big government! I really loathe this administration...

"The head of the Environmental Protection Agency is admitting that an EPA study shows U.S. efforts to cut greenhouse gas emissions will have no impact on the climate unless China and India do the same.

Lisa Jackson told a Senate hearing today: "I believe the central parts of the [EPA] chart are that U.S. action alone will not impact world CO2 levels, but the race is on for us to enter into a clean energy future."

The chart shows relatively no change in CO2 levels unless other large energy-producing countries make changes.

Energy Secretary Steven Chu said he does not agree with the EPA assessment; a direct contradiction between two Obama administration officials asked the same question at the same hearing. The EPA says U.S. efforts to fight global warming probably won't work."

LSM said...

Great post. The Star Tribune has become so liberal that I finally canceled my subscription after 15 years. I'll get my news from other sources. Great to see another passionate conservative blogger in MN. There certainly aren't enough of us!!