The weather is certainly putting a dampener on the summer season so far but can we expect sunshine after the rain or maybe even a silver lining in those dark clouds? Local weather expert JJ Killeen from Ahascragh gave us his thoughts on the unseasonable weather conditions when I contacted him during the week. Before I could get a word in, J.J started off the conversation by asking me had I seen any bees around recently! He told me ‘the scarcity in bees is a sign of bad weather’. He also told me that we had had ‘two full moons in the month of June and that that was also a bad sign’. And who could disagree with him considering the rain that fell during the month of June? When seeking to predict weather patterns JJ is a keen believer in the knowledge of animals. He advises People readers to keep an eye out for some of their (the animals!) habits and behaviour in the coming months. ‘If you see swallows flying low or even cattle huddling in groups then you can expect rain. If you notice your cat sitting with his tail towards the fire or if the fish are taking bait that bit easier then get out your umbrella’. JJ also claimed that during the recent thunderstorms in Britain he hadn’t heard of one dead fish or animal as a result of the bad weather. ‘Remember the terrible thunderstorms in England where people were killed, I can tell you that not one animal was killed or fish washed up. They had all left days before that’. JJ believes that this is because of their ability to predict the weather and of course who could argue with that either – we have all heard of the dog going ‘barking mad’ when there is thunder and lightning around. He also attributed the latest spell of bad weather to the fact we had fabulous sunshine during the end of May and beginning of June. ‘When there is a spell of good weather then we have high temperatures. Then there is thunder and thunderstorms bring rain. That is the reason for our all the rain we’ve had.’ Despite all this talk about thunderstorms and rain, JJ is very optimistic that the weather will improve – and sooner rather than lately. ‘It is my belief that the weather will pick up around the 12 th or 14 th July. I expect we’ll have two good months of weather following through until the 20 th September.’ JJ puts this belief down to a theory which has been passed through generations. ‘When the crows build high then there is good weather. They built high this year and I would generally base my predictions around them as they are a reliable sign.’ As we talked he began to tell me some of the proverbs linked to signs for fine weather which included ‘red sky at night, Shepard’s delight, dew on the grass, rain shan’t pass’ and finally ‘rain before seven, fine by eleven’. So weather can be predicted by the colour of the sky at night, dew on the grass or even the weird goings-on and peculiar behaviour of animals! No need for the likes of Martin King at all, at all! So if this is the case then if you see your cat cuddling up on front of the fire this evening grab him by the tail and throw him out the back door before he gets too comfortable and you never know it might go someway to stopping all this dreadful weather we’re having! Has anyone any better ideas?