China

A contribution from LiuWeiChinese characters for LiuWei

There are many Chinese proverbs about weather forecasting. In the textbook of primary school, there is a lesson titled "How to know weather by clouds".

The below Chinese proverbs on ants and snakes describe forecasting the coming rain by seeing underground animals come out.

I have found more than 10 proverbs on the topic of forecasting the coming rain or storm. Other signs for coming rain include: spider gets back web; dragonfly flys lowly; large group of seagulls fly towards land; cattle and horse open mouth to give out heat.

I find a great web resource on for Chinese proverbs on weather, named as  Science Museums of China . There is a special column on the  Chinese folklore proverbs on weather, including the history, introduction and eight categories. It is a pity that this column has only Chinese version.
 
In that column, the eight categories of proverbs are:
  • (1) about wind
  • (2) about cloud and fog
  • (3) about rain, snow, dew and frost
  • (4) about session, season and calendar
  • (5) about sky
  • (6) about warm and cold
  • (7) about animals and plants

This column is support by the Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, China. Thus you can regard it as an authoritative resource.


Chinese Proverb Red sky in the morning
English Translation Sunglow in morning tells you not to go out, Sunglow in evening tells you can travel a long way.
Comment This is to forecast the sunny day by sunglows in this sunrise or last sundown. When you see the sunglow in western sky and no cloud in eastern sky in the morning, it is always means rainy clouds are coming. When you see the sunglow in eastern sky in the evening, it will be sunny in next several days.

Chinese Proverb Animals
English Translation Ants block the way, coming the rain
Snake cross the road, sign for the rain
Comment Animals living in caves underground are sensitive to damp weather, including ants, earthworm and snakes. When you see them in the road, it always means they are moving house in a hurry for the coming rain.

Chinese Proverb The dog that is idle barks at his fleas, but he that is hunting feels them not.