The onslaught of small changes: the sun is higher and hotter; the remaining snow pack, with its precious reserve of water (which, gratefully, we did not lose in the last rain) degrades from flakes into crystals. Hoards of blue jays, which leave the state during fall hawk watch, are likely drifting back and augmenting our resident pre-mating flocks. Today the male pileated woodpecker, right on time, has started his spring drumming on the large hollow basswood at the edge of the woods. His sonorous announcement easily reaches the valley below. And more, flocks of northward-bound, winter-clad goldfinches twitter quietly from the top of the maples, and our one or two tree sparrows are joined by a handful more, all Canada bound, eventually, but for now, a slow drift north, eating and socializing along the way.
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