Less snow. More warmth. Strange rain. The global climate has continued to push limits during the first quarter of 2007, extending a warm pattern that began last fall.

The Earth experienced the second warmest January-to-March period since 1880, ending a winter season that saw some of the highest average temperatures on record, according to a new report released April 17 by the National Climate Data Center.

Though certain regions (like Alaska) chilled below average toward the end of the winter, March temperatures simmered up in the contiguous United States, Europe, Brazil and most of Asia to close out the warm winter.

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