This harsh winter has been hard on all of us, and it's also taken a toll on our wildlife, especially waterfowl and songbirds. February is on record for the most number of injured birds a wildlife clinic in North Kingstown has taken during a winter season.
Kristin Fletcher, executive director of Wildlife Rehabilitators Association of Rhode Island, said frozen waters have made it difficult for waterfowl to fish. The nonprofit’s clinic is taking care of emaciated and dehydrated birds, including many Canada geese. Fletcher said winter is usually the clinic's quiet season.
Yet more snow is on the way for Rhode Island. The national weather service expects about one to three inches of snow starting late Tuesday afternoon.
The snow is predicted to switch over to a wintry mix by midnight, lasting into Wednesday morning. Meteorologist Benjamin Sipprell said this could affect the Wednesday morning commute.
“As we go into Wednesday morning, temperatures will be pretty well above normal, so the expectation is for the morning commute, it may be a little soupy out there with very low visibility along area roadways,” said Sipprell.
This February is officially the snowiest on record in Providence, according to the National Weather Service. A light snowfall on Tuesday night pushed the monthly total to 31.6 inches, breaking the city record set in 1962.
Meteorologist Alan Dunham says that’s even more than the famed February blizzard of '78. “1978 is in third place with a total of 28.6 inches, for the month of February," said Dunham.
And forecasters predict the new record could get just a bit higher before the month is out. An inch or less of snow could fall this afternoon.
Rhode Islanders will soon get a break from arctic temperatures, but the trade is more snow this week. After several days without a glimpse of the white stuff, the National Weather Service is predicting snowfall will return Tuesday night.
Meteorologist Alan Dunham said Rhode Island won’t see the foot or more it’s seen in previous storms this winter. “Maybe two to four inches. Mainly Providence down towards Newport and points east, but even northwest part of Rhode Island up in the northwest hills could see an inch or two,” said Dunham.
Rhode Islanders are in for another arctic blast starting Friday. Temperatures plunged into the single digits, and the National Weather Service says things will only warm up to the high teens through the weekend.
Meteorologist Mathew Belk, said wind chills will make temperatures feel far below zero. “Wind chills are going to be generally in the minus fifteen to minus 24 range, so it’s going to feel pretty chilly out there,” said Belk.