The current weather in Toledo (sixties and seventies all week, with lots of bloom already occurring in gardens in the neighborhood) got me to checking weather trends for this area. Given that I should be grading papers, I didn't do any sort of systematic search, just today's date going back thirty years, and so didn't discover an actual trend. I did, however, learn that the historical average high for the day is 45, the record (in 1990, according to WeatherUnderground) 76. Today we're getting rain, keeping temperatures down in the mid-sixties, but this week is shaping up to be one of near-record high temperatures. This is spring break for me, so weather that facilitates traipsing around Metroparks makes me happy (note to self: finish grading today), but I can't help worrying over possible negative consequences of all this warm weather.
Several people have already expressed concern that we may not have gotten enough cold weather to knock down some of the insect population. Yes, we needs bugs for bird food and pollination, but I have absolutely no nostalgia for the giant flying cockroaches of my Florida girlhood and no desire to see them migrate north. And we already have quite enough mosquitoes and fleas.
While beauty is in the eye of the beholder, I also love the shift from hardwoods to birches in the woodlands the further north one travels. As beautiful as maples are, if northern Ohio and southern Michigan become too hot for the characteristic vegetation of the northwoods, this will be a very sad thing. Northward migration of the scraggly, not-very-green woodlands of the deep South would be even sadder.