Bill Felker

Host - Poor Will's Almanack

Bill Felker has been writing nature columns and almanacs for regional and national publications since 1984. His Poor Will’s Almanack has appeared as an annual publication since 2003. His organization of weather patterns and phenology (what happens when in nature) offers a unique structure for understanding the repeating rhythms of the year.

Exploring everything from animal husbandry to phenology, Felker has become well known to farmers as well as urban readers throughout the country.  He is an occasional speaker on the environment at nature centers, churches and universities, and he has presented papers related to almanacking at academic conferences, as well. Felker has received three awards for his almanac writing from the Ohio Newspaper Association. "Better writing cannot be found in America's biggest papers," stated the judge on the occasion of Felker’s award in 2000.

Currently, Bill Felker lives with his wife in Yellow Springs, Ohio. He has two daughters, Jeni, who is a psychologist in Portland, Oregon, and Neysa, a photographer in Spoleto, Italy.

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Nature
8:45 am
Tue January 24, 2012

Poor Will's Almanack: January 24 - 30, 2012

Flickr creative commons user MIicala

Poor Will’s Almanack for the First Week of Late Winter.

The weather may or may not shift toward April during this week of the year, but my daybook of events in nature from the past decades tells a clear story of the season's motion.

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Nature
8:35 am
Tue January 17, 2012

Poor Will's Almanack: January 17 - 23, 2012

The Moon in January
Flick Creative Commons user MGShelton

Poor Will’s Almanack for the Third Week of January, the Third Week of Deep Winter.

On January 23, just a few days away, the Singing Cardinal Moon, the first complete moon of 2012, will become new, initiating a whole series of moons that map out the year before us. This Singing Cardinal Moon, of course, brings cardinals into song all across the country.

And by the time those birds are fully engaged in marking their territories, it will be time for the Red-Winged Blackbird Moon, the first moon of Early Spring.

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Nature
8:35 am
Tue January 10, 2012

Poor Will's Almanack: January 10 - 16, 2011

Flickr Creative Commons user lsk208

Poor Will’s Almanack for the Second Week of January, the Second Week of Deep Winter.

All along the 40th Parallel, the sun starts to rise a little earlier this week of the year, marking a significant milestone in the progress of spring. The foxes know the days are lengthening. Watch for them playing and courting in the fields.

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Nature
8:30 am
Tue January 3, 2012

Poor Will's Almanack: January 3 - 9, 2012

Orion
Flickr Creative Commons user Eduardo Marino

Poor Will’s Almanack for the First Week of January, the First Week of Deep Winter

The progress of deep winter can be gauged by whatever milestones you select. You can track storms and snow or the frequency of birdsong, the state of last year’s plants, or the steady shifting of the sun and stars. The motions are slow and easily measured. This is a simple place to begin to follow the year.

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Nature
10:44 am
Tue December 27, 2011

Poor Will's Almanack: December 27, 2011 - January 2, 2012

Oak Leaf Hydrangea in January
Flickr Creative Commons user MGShelton

Poor Will's Almanack for the Transition Week to Deep Winter.

It is New Year's week, and before January begins, I always take an inventory of what is happening around the yard and in my life.

I check the oak leaf hydrangea by the back porch. It often keeps half its leaves, even when the days stay below freezing. I stand and look at the wood pile for a while, trying to estimate how much wood is left.

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