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Observations by Gary Fewless for Green Bay WI (Lat.N 44.51° Long. W 88.02° ), except as noted. For flowers lacking conspicuous petals or sepals I define "anthesis" as release of pollen by mature anthers.

November 2001

Observations by Gary Fewless, except as noted


Date Observation (Click on links for photos)

2000-3000 Canada Geese were seen flying over the UWGB campus this morning in numerous "V's" of varying size, apparently headed for the water of Green Bay

The WI DNR reports some brave fishermen still catching Muskies in northern WI. Toward the northwestern areas of the state there is now significant snow cover, with reports of 8-12 inches. Toward the northeast there is little or no snow and "dirt" roads are not yet frozen, leading to some difficult driving conditions. Bear sightings appear to have been more common during the recent deer season, presumably due to the warm weather.

Nov29 Roy Lukes reports a Mourning Cloak butterfly in Door County November 29.

A little snow fell in Green Bay overnight, but just a touch. The weather has been so mild that the snow fell on fresh Petunias next to my house. Areas to our north and west received major snowfall, the radio reporting depths over 20 inches in some portions of Minnesota, with 30 inches at Buffalo Minnesota!!

Another report of low numbers of Tree Sparrows, plus numerous Juncos, Manitowoc County (Joel Trick). He also reports Cardinals as being noticeably uncommon.

Preliminary reports on the Wisconsin gun deer hunting season indicate the number of deer taken (291,563) is much lower than last year (433,511). The Wisconsin DNR estimated the total deer herd at 1.65 million before the season began, so there are still a lot of deer out there. If just 300,000 of the remaining deer are does of reproductive age (a very low estimate) and they average 1.5 fawns each year, we may consider the possibility that the deer herd is at a level that is difficult to control by hunting.

This was only the third deer season in the last 40 years for which there was no snow cover anywhere in Wisconsin. The lack of snow made the deer harder to see and because of the warm weather they moved around less, making them less likely to be seen by hunters.

Nov27 There were still earthworms out this morning, as there have been after each of the small rains in the last week.
Nov26 Several people have reported Tree Sparrows back in our area, in small numbers.
Nov23 Still mild, high temperature of 56 F. In addition to some of the flowering species listed for yesterday, today I saw Field Penny Cress (Thlaspi arvense) and Alsike Clover (Trifolium hybridum) in flower at High Cliff State Park in Calumet County. There were some very large patches of flowering Charlock (Brassica kaber) in southern Brown County.

Warm weather continues, High temperature of 53 F. There are still many species of plants (though not many individuals) in flower. A few individuals of the following 20 species were noted in flower on a walk along the Fox River Trail in the City of Green Bay: White Panicled Aster (Aster simplex), Hoary Alyssum (Berteroa incana), Charlock (Brassica kaber), Canadian Horseweed (Conyza canadensis), Red-osier Dogwood (Cornus stolonifera), Wild Carrot (Daucus carota), Dog Mustard (Erucastrum gallicum), White Snakeroot (Eupatorium rugosum), Worm-seed Mustard (Erysimum cheiranthoides), Black Medick (Medicago lupulina), White Sweet Clover (Melilotus alba), Yellow Sweet Clover (Melilotus officinalis), Catnip (Nepeta cataria), Wild Parsnip (Pastinaca sativa), Knotweed (Polygonum aviculare), Ragwort (Senecio vulgaris), Black Nightshade (Solanum nigrum), Sow Thistle (Sonchus uliginosus), Tansy (Tanacetum vulgaris), Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale)

Rough-leg Hawk sighted in Marathon County (Dave Marks).

Nov21 Lake Erie has recently reached its lowest water level since 1966. Lake Michigan's level is about 1.3 feet above the record low and held nearly steady so far in November. This is the season of decline each year and if warmer than average temperatures persist they will increase losses to evaporation in the next few months.
Nov20 Northern lakes are still ice-free and WDNR reported fishing was good up to the last weekend. Many people have reported insects still flying. Hunters appear to have registered deer more promptly than usual, because of the need to quickly process the meat before it spoiled in the warm weather.

European Buckthorn (Rhamnus cathartica) is remarkable for retaining green leaves far into the Fall, long after most other species have lost their leaves. This is one of our most troublesome invasive species in Wisconsin. The tendency to keep its leaves late can be helpful in finding plants for removal.

Nov17 The unseasonably warm weather has brought a few chipmunks out of hibernation in Green Bay (Bob Howe).
Nov15 Unseasonably warm weather continues. Today's high temperature of 68F was 26 degrees above the average high and broke the previous record of 65 (set in 1990). Click here for a graph of daily high temps to date.
Nov13 Photos of the northern lights discussed here for Nov 8 are now available on the web. It is interesting to see the different displays of the same event from such a broad range of locations around the northern hemisphere. Some of the photos of red light in particular are more brilliant than any I have seen personally.

Warm weather continues. Daily High temperatures have been above average every day in November so far, sometimes by as much as 20 degrees. Low temperatures have been more nearly "normal" (which is to say some above and some below the mathematical average), and there were reports as early as last week of thin ice forming on some ponds and puddles in northern Wisconsin.

Large numbers of our winter birds are returning to nortnwestern Wisconsin, including Pine Siskins, Snow Buntings and Tree Sparrows. They spend the summer in the far north and for them we are the "south" that they migrate to. Everything is relative.

The DNR web site reports that Chipmunks have begun hibernation in northern Wisconsin.


Good displays of the northern lights (Aurora borealis) have been reported in our area and across the northern USA for the last several nights. You can see some photographs of northern lights (including some from our area) on the web at and a search of the web will turn up many related sites. Thanks to Joel Trick for the web address.

The Wis DNR reports about 150,000 Canada Geese in the Horicon Marsh area, and increasing numbers of ring-necked ducks, scaup, (bluebills), and ruddy ducks.

Wis DNR also warns that Whitetail Deer are well into their fall "rut" and are therefore likely to make poor career decisions when crossing roads -- so be alert when driving.


Yesterdays high temperature of 67 was 20 degrees higher than the average for that date and only 2 degrees below the record high.

Although most trees have lost their leaves, a few still hold them. Also a few flowers can still be found on some herbaceous species. In mild years we have seen flowers on a few species up to Dec 1 in the city of Green Bay. If you look carefully you can even find a few Dandilions in flower today.


Saw my first flock of Evening Grosbeaks in my yard, also a large flock of migrating Sandhill Cranes, very high. T. of Cooperstown, Manitowoc County (Joel Trick).

Mild weather continues. Yesterdays high of 56 F is the coldest day so far this month, but is still 7 degrees above the average for this date.

Nov03 A flock of over 300 Canada Geese in Allouez fields near the East River. They had been absent for several days, then returned in smaller numbers on 11/01 and 02.
Nov01 Northern Shrike, Waushara County (Andy Paulios). High temperature of 64 F in Green Bay is 14 degrees above the average for this date.

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Last updated on May 20, 2015