Outdoors Journal: Daylight will be fading throughout October

  • Article by: JIM GILBERT
  • Updated: September 30, 2010 - 11:06 PM

Photo: David Brewster, Star Tribune

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The days quickly grow shorter during October, with each day here in Minnesota losing about three minutes of light. The sun is still strong enough to push the mercury into the lower 90s early in the month, with highs in the low 80s possible all the way up to Halloween.

In the greater Twin Cities area, we start out on Oct. 1 with 11 hours and 43 minutes of daylight. By Oct. 31 we are down to 10 hours and 13 minutes of daylight. So our loss for the month is 90 minutes of daylight. Meanwhile, the normal high temperature is dropping from 66 degrees to 50 degrees, and the low from 45 degrees to 32 degrees.

Some people say there is a sadness in the air in autumn, but we adjust by moving some activities indoors, dressing in layers and making plans for the near future. To survive, wild animals must migrate, hibernate or adapt to the colder days and longer nights while remaining active. Short-lived species might die, leaving their offspring in eggs or some other form to take over in the spring.

Plants likewise prepare for winter by going into dormancy and/or producing seeds or spores that will ensure the survival of each species.


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