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May 6, 2010

April was one of our warmest

April in Baltimore turned out to be one of the warmest on record for the city, putting a 90-degree rush on the summer weather that is sure to follow.

The April climate summary from the National Weather Service notes that the average temperature for the month was 57.1 degrees. That was 3.9 degrees above the long-term (30-year) average for Aprils at BWI.

Warm April in BaltimoreWhen the statisticians out at Sterling looked at just the daily high temperatures, they found that the average daily high of 69.7 degrees last month was the 6th-warmest on record for the city, tying for that spot with April 1976.

Much of that heat came during the first week of April. The average for that week was 64.6 degrees, the warmest first week of April on record, beating the old (1929) record by just a tenth of a degree.

The hottest stretch came on April 5, 6 and 7. The high of 84 degrees on the 5th broke a record of 83 set on that date in 1942. The high of 90 degrees on the 6th tied the record set in 1929.

The twin highs of 90 degrees on the 6th and 7th also tied as the second-earliest first occurrence Bee and flowerof 90-degree weather on record in Baltimore. The earliest on the books was on March 29, 1945, when the mercury hit 90.

When they looked at March and April together, the number-crunchers at Sterling noticed two consecutive warm months. In fact, this March and April ranked as the 10th-warmest on record, and the warmest since 1977.

Warm springs are an increasing concern among climate scientists and biologists. They see a gradual "spring creep" - warmer temperatures coming earlier and earlier in the year - that shows signs of getting some species out of synch with vital food sources or pollinators. People adjust pretty easily, but some animals and the plants and animals they have depended on for eons are finding themselves on increasingly different schedules. Elsewhere, earlier snowmelts are increasing the frequency and size of western forest fires. 

Here's more on the "spring creep" studies.  

(SUN PHOTOS/Top: John Makely, 2006/ Bottom: Algerina Perna, 2008)

Posted by Frank Roylance at 11:44 AM | | Comments (3)
Categories: By the numbers


Where are the climate change doubters now, hmmm?

FR: Sorry. If it's a mistake to claim climate change is a hoax because of a snowy winter, it's also a mistake to assume it's real because of a warm April at BWI. Once again, it's long-term, global trends we have to look at.

Frank, you mentioned in the blog that this past April wasn't an anomoly--it's a continuing trend. This past winter was an anomoly, and while we broke a record for snowfall, the winter's temperatures averaged near normal.

FR: I'm not disagreeing with you. Even the record snowfall is consistent with global warming predictions. My point is simply that you can't draw global conclusions from a season here, a month there, in one tiny spot on the planet. The science rests on global trends over long periods of time.

Sorry Frank, I have to disagree with you. I saw a clip of Ann Coultier on Hannity (I think) the other night and she declared Global Warming a hoax since there was snow on the ground in ALL 50 states this year. Since Fox is the most trusted new source, she must be right.

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About Frank Roylance
This site is the Maryland Weather archive. The current Maryland Weather blog can be found here.
Frank Roylance is a reporter for The Baltimore Sun. He came to Baltimore from New Bedford, Mass. in 1980 to join the old Evening Sun. He moved to the morning Sun when the papers merged in 1992, and has spent most of his time since covering science, including astronomy and the weather. One of The Baltimore Sun's first online Web logs, the Weather Blog debuted in October 2004. In June 2006 Frank also began writing comments on local weather and stargazing for The Baltimore Sun's print Weather Page. Frank also answers readers’ weather queries for the newspaper and the blog. Frank Roylance retired in October 2011. Maryland Weather is now being updated by members of The Baltimore Sun staff

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