Buckle up, Big Apple, because Mother Nature's got a mixed bag of winter wonders on tap this season, as the experts are predicting an El Nino to shake things up. The windy city got a sneak peek of what's to come, with Chicagoans waking up to a snowy surprise Sunday morning, but don't let that winter advisory fool you—scientists at the National Weather Service's Climate Prediction Center are telling us to expect a milder and drier winter, with more than a 55% chance of a "strong" El Nino sticking around from January to March, according to the Chicago Tribune.
Speaking of the NOAA's outlook, much like a game of meteorological roulette, it's calling for a winter that's wetter-than-average in parts of the West and a warmer toastier experience for us northerners, and if you're in the Gulf Coast or Southeast, get ready for a potential flood fiasco, as Jon Gottschalck, chief of the Operational Prediction Branch of the Climate Prediction Center, shared in a statement obtained by NOAA.
The tale doesn't end with just snow and temperatures, because El Nino's known to also ruffle the feathers of migratory birds and mess with wintering habitats, giving city dwellers a likely glimpse of our feathered friends in places they might not usually show, and as Rae Wynn-Grant, a wildlife ecologist, says. "It might be that there are fewer birds because El Nino impacted their overwintering habitat, or it might be that there are birds showing up in urban landscapes because for whatever reason, the resources are greater," reported by the Chicago Tribune.