About us: We own the Wild Birds Unlimited nature shop in East Lansing, Michigan,
a store that provides a wide variety of supplies to help you enjoy the birdwatching hobby.

This blog was created to answer frequently asked questions & to share nature stories and photographs.
To contribute, email me at bloubird@gmail.com.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

How icicles form

Photo from Wikimedia Commons
After almost a week without heat or electricity due to the ice storm in mid-Michigan, I now have a new appreciation for the power of ice.

So I decided to investigate icicles. As a resident of a state with cold winters, I know icicles form when rain or melting snow drips down on a surface. When droplets slip down an icicle, a small amount of heat is released. This heated air travels upwards and slows down the growth of the icicle's top, while the tip is elongated.

Scientists believe that future studies into the mathematical equations that govern icicle growth -- the same that apply to stalactites -- could help in the prevention of icicle formation on power lines.

Related Articles:
- Best food for birds in the winter http://goo.gl/MVFcbl
- How to make the birds come back to your feeders http://goo.gl/apLqhn
- Why birds don't drink snow for their water http://goo.gl/1BEcVL
- Birds in icy weather suffer http://goo.gl/M7h6vc
- What is the Largest Recorded Snowflake? http://bit.ly/tvi9yv
- Fun snow facts: http://goo.gl/ZbWjOm

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