1963 One of the Roughest Winters in Europe - History Newsreel
Britain & EU facing 'longest winter in 50 years' as Siberian swan arrives earliest since 1963? (AOL).
A Siberian swan has flown to the UK nearly a month early - and the earliest since 1963 - sparking fears Britain could be facing the longest and coldest winter in 50 years.
The arrival of the Bewick's swans at the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust (WWT) in Slimbridge, Gloucestershire, usually heralds the start of winter, with around 300 of the animals migrating every year.
The first bird arrived on Sunday 11 October, a month earlier than last year and the earliest for 50 years since records began in 1963.
Unusually cold weather is currently sweeping parts of western Russia and eastern Europe, with temperatures are 5C to 10C below average.
The low temperatures, snowfall and north easterly winds have encouraged Bewick's swans to press on with their westwards migration through Europe.
El Niño is underway in the tropical Pacific, prompting speculation that Europe is in for a long, cold winter.
And the early migration of Bewick's swans reflects that winter has kicked off earlier than usual in many countries, says WWT.
WWT's expert Julia Newth said: "Apparently there's a Russian saying that 'the swan brings snow on its bill', because they tend to move just ahead of the cold weather.
"Of course, we can't infer much from the arrival of a single swan but it's certainly exciting this bird has arrived so early.
Temperatures are currently five to 10 degrees below average in parts of western Russia and eastern Europe and are expected to drop to the minus 30s.
Spurred on by bitter north easterly winds, many of the swans are currently gathering in the Netherlands, with 45 on Lake Gooimeer and 80 on Lake Lauwersmeer.
Related: Blob of cold water in North Atlantic has scientists worried.
I cant figure out why brilliant minds, ( there were over 9k PHDS, 30k scientists that signed petition against Kyoto) are so darn stupid— Joe Bastardi (@BigJoeBastardi) October 13, 2015
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