Mar 29, 2011

Signs of Spring - I think.

Spring time is my second favorite season right behind Autumn.  The official start of spring is over a  week old and yet this week in Connecticut we had snow twice and temps hovering around 40 and snow possible this week.  YIKES!   But don't fret my friends, there are signs everywhere that old man winter is losing his grip.

Ice is still hanging on - barely

The snow is melting away to reveal what I'm pretty sure is my lawn, but after almost 90 inches of snow I forgot what it looks like.  The ice on our rivers and lakes is melting and this open water creates new playgrounds for returning waterfowl.  The days are getting warmer and longer which means after work I can spend time outside without using a flash light.  The only downside to spring is the loads of yard work and outside chores that will most certainly end up on my honey-do list.

The sightings of birds last seen in the fall start to increase as do sightings of plant life in the form of fresh buds on the trees or leaves pushing up from the snow free ground.   I'm not sure if there is just one specific sign of spring that sends me into a frenzy of anticipation but with each new sign I encounter, that anticipation gets harder to ignore and the more anxious I become to see what new life spring is going to provide. 

One of 15 in my yard this past week

For me the first sign of spring is the Maple sugaring season which I reported on in my Sap is really flowing - a sign of spring post.  It also brings the start of open water fishing season as well as the Spring Turkey hunting season which are just two of my favorite spring time passions.  Oh, and I can't forget the Spring Stiped Bass and American Shad runs in many of our Connecticut Rivers that dump into the Long Island Sound.  You would think with all these great opportunities I would be happy and relaxed, but with so many options for spending time outdoors I start to worry that I might miss something.  Fret not my friends I promise to do my best to ignore my chores and house work as to not miss a single opportunity this spring, but please don't tell my wife I said this.

For those that don't fish there is the return of birds and waterfowl from their wintering grounds as they migrate their way back north to their breeding grounds offering up some incredible opportunities for birding and photography.  It usually starts with seeing more geese and ducks, then the robins show up and of course the red winged black birds.  It also seems like our resident birds like the black capped chickadee, titmice and cardinals start to really turn up the volume in their sweet notes as they start to look for mates.  I know many days during the past two weeks where the birds on my feeder outside my bedroom window were so loud that I didn't need an alarm clock.  At first I was frustrated as I still had some sleep time available but then I realized that I couldn't miss this so I just laid there enjoying the sweet sounds.

The culprit responsible for my early awakening

Even if you never leave your back yard you can enjoy the signs of spring as the plants, trees and your grass starts to wake from a long winter rest.  The daffodils in my yard are starting to peek out from the ground.  I noticed plenty of earthworm holes in the yard as well and that probably explains why the 15 robins where hanging around out there

I can't leave out all the reptiles that start to make their presence known as snakes become more visible, peepers start their peeping and the spotted salamanders get ready for their spring migration.  Spotted salamanders make their spring migration to vernal ponds (just a fancy name for a temporary pool of water that offer up breeding habitat for many insects and reptiles) where they will breed and from what I have read it is a site to see a large migration.  I have yet to witness a large salamander migration and this is on my hit list for this spring so if anyone knows of a good viewing spot in Connecticut or surround states please let me know.

No matter what your favorite spring time sign is, it's time to pay attention and be on the lookout because it happens fast and you surely don't want to miss a chance to welcome an old friend home.

Welcome Home Spring.

1 comment:

  1. Spring, I hope.
    They are calling for a Noreaster on friday.

    That Cardinal photo, beautiful.