Jeffers Foundation

PHENOLOGY & ASTRONOMY

Data from Freshwater Society Minnesota Weatherguide Environment Calendar and Almanac (Jim Gilbert for Phenology and Rod Nerdahl for Astronomy)

Phenology

Phenology: Third Week of June 2019

June is rose month and now is when many types of roses are in full bloom. Serviceberries and red mulberries are ripe and ripening; birds and us outdoor enthusiasts enjoy these juicy fruits. In southern Minnesota, the second cutting of alfalfa begins, and a dozen butterfly species, including the buckeye and great spangled fritillary, are on the wing. On the June solstice, when astronomical summer begins in the Northern Hemisphere, the city of Hallock in extreme northwestern Minnesota will have 16 hours and 15 minutes of daylight; thatís 45 minutes more than Winona in the southeast.

June 17, 2017: Out of Duluth a few miles the surface temperature of Lake Superior was 51 degrees F and fishing was good with both king and coho salmon plus lake and brown trout biting. Lilac shrubs, crabapple trees, and wild lupines were seen blooming along the North Shore to Grand Marais and beyond.

View the June Phenology Information from the Freshwater Society Minnesota Weatherguide Environment Calendar and Almanac >>

Species of the Month

Beaver (Castor canadensis)

Beaver <em>(Castor canadensis)</em>
Russ Myrman

The largest North American rodent, the beaver is perfectly adapted to an aquatic environment. As it goes under water, its nose and ear valves close, special membranes act as goggles to protect its eyes, and its lips close behind its front teeth allowing it to carry branches in its mouth. Beaver can remain submerged as long as 20 minutes. With their strong jaws and teeth, they can chew through a six-inch tree in 15 minutes. The beaver has been called nature's original water conservationist and land and wildlife manager. Beaver ponds often support a greater variety and abundance of wildlife than any other ecosystem in the forest.

Astronomy: June

Highlights
Highlights
As Jupiter reaches Opposition, we look back at images from the Juno spacecraft. Launched on 8/5/2011, Juno completed its five-year journey when it entered orbit on 7/5/2016. To avoid Jupiter's crippling radiation belts, Juno established a polar orbit, skimming between the radiation belts and the planet less than 3,000 miles above the cloud tops. This provided us a never-before seen view of Jupiter's polar caps, and they are absolutely spellbinding. Though ten times the size of the Earth, Jupiter spins twice as fast, making a day less than ten hours long. This rapid rotation, along with internal heat of tens of thousand of degrees, creates a dizzyingly chaotic swirl to Jupiter's clouds, especially around the poles.

Morning Sky

This month, notice how early the Sun appears in the sky. Though it rises by mid-month at 5:36 am, the light starts to become visible at 1:53 am. That means our night provides only three hours 18 minutes of dark sky. Though much warmer than winter, astronomy during a Minnesota summer night can be difficult. As Venus swings around the back side of the Sun, it moves low along the horizon from the east to the northeast by month's end.

Evening Sky

Joined by the Moon on 6/4, Mercury continues to climb higher in the sky, meeting up with Mars on 6/18 and reaching Greatest Eastern Elongation on 6/23. Mars finally loses its battle with twilight and disappears into its glare. Finally at opposition on 6/10, Jupiter will remain up all night, spending the month low in the south in the little known constellation of Ophiuchus. Now in the evening sky, Saturn has a very close visit from the Moon on 6/18, when the two rise at 10:30 pm.

Sun Declination

View the June Astronomy Information from the Freshwater Society Minnesota Weatherguide Environment Calendar and Almanac >>

LOOK FOR

What to Look For 06, 2019

Garden roses at June peak of bloom (U of Minn. Landscape Arboretum):
2017 June 23
2016 June 20
2015 June 24
2014 June 25
2013 June 27

TEACHER PHENOLOGY PREVIEW

TEACHER ASTRONOMY PREVIEW

June ASTRONOMY PHENOMENA

3rd, New Moon - 5:02 am

7th, Moon perigee; 228,978 miles - 6:15 pm

8th, Moon near Regulus low in west - After sunset

10th, First Quarter Moon - 12:59 am

17th, Full Moon Strawberry (Ojibwe) - 3:31 am

18th, Mercury 0.14° north of Mars - 9:35 am

21st, Summer Solstice; summer begins N Hemisphere - 10:54 am

23rd, Moon apogee; 251,375 miles - 2:49 am

25th, Last Quarter Moon - 4:46 am

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