Harbinger of Spring

Growing up in the Midwest the return of the robin was always a harbinger of spring.   Here in southwest Montana  a kind of sparrow like bird is always the first to return in the spring is.   Following the sparrow like bird a week or so later is the bluebird.   Finally there is the the meadowlark who is the last of the migrating birds to return.

I first noticed the sparrow like birds early last week.  When hanging my first clothes out I could clearly hear them calling out to one another about the bounty or lack of bounty they were finding here in Montana.   They were gathering and flitting about in the pastures around the house.   They always seem to be on the move and just far enough away that I never capture them well with a camera.

jun08_bettyholling_mtnbluebirdinsnow

Mountain bluebird in the snow. Taken by Betty Holling.

Monday I saw my first bluebird.    I haven’t seen another one yet, but I am sure more of them will be arriving soon.   Once the males have mostly arrived and check out the digs we have on the fence posts, the females won’t be far behind.  We have a series of blue bird houses on our fence posts and love to watch them each year.

I looked at my blog to see when I wrote about the bluebird last time  and see I saw this fella almost two weeks earlier this year.   Last time we had a major snow storm with six inches  just after my first bluebird arrived.   This year we have woken up to snow already twice this week.   It always make me think about hearty and resilient these little guys are.   How far they go to return here each spring and how the weather doesn’t stop them.   It is how we should all look at the setbacks we have once we get spring fever.   March on it will get better.

 

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4 comments on “Harbinger of Spring

  1. In my area of the Northeast, the harbinger of spring is the sound of peepers – tiny frogs who hatch in the wetlands once it thaws. Even though they are too small and elusive to see, the cacophony of their chirps can be overwhelming to the human ear . I heard them today on my walk.It is several weeks ahead of schedule due to the mild winter.So I am overjoyed at this sign of Spring, yet thankful they are not singing in the culvert behind my house..

  2. I saw my first robin here in Michigan yesterday. Some say they remain all winter, but I seldom see them. I do recall one year we had a ton of snow in March and the poor robins were having a hard time finding food. I think I heard a redwing blackbird this week, also. You do have to admire the tenacity of the creatures who follow their instincts and face so much adversity and yet don’t give up.

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