Spring arrived over the weekend, bringing warmer temperatures (in the mid-50s!) that melted 99% of our snow. Of course, we returned to colder temperatures yesterday and a wintry mix is in the forecast for tonight but, clearly, Winter is loosening its hold!
We saw our first American Robin over the weekend. The birds are a harbinger of Spring in Michigan. Whenever we start seeing Robins, we exclaim, “Spring is coming!”
There are signs that Spring has awakened the raccoons. I’ve read that raccoons don’t hibernate over the winter, but they do go into a state of rest and shelter in their dens throughout the colder months of the year, coming out every few weeks to forage for food and water. I never see signs of ‘coons in the winter. However, the last several days I’ve found the bird feeder tray tipped. This morning the tray was tipped AND I found the door of the suet feeder opened. One of the two cakes I had just put out a couple of days ago was missing. These are the sort of things the raccoons do when they visit my feeder.
Sunday morning I was looking out the living room window when I saw a small group of large birds in the distance flying toward the house. They looked larger than Canadian Geese, which we often see. I continued to watch and as they flew closer, I saw that they were swans. They flew very low–just above the house. The sunrise touched them with a golden light, making them appear to glow. It was beautiful!
I didn’t grab my camera. I am still too unfamiliar with the camera on my new phone to use it instinctively. Besides, the swans flew too quickly on their powerful wings and I was too lost in the beauty of the moment. I didn’t want to take my eyes away from them. I didn’t want to miss a moment.
When the swans had flown over the house and disappeared into the north, I sat down and looked at the bird identification app on my phone. I have it set for Midwest birds only so I don’t have to look through a lot of birds that aren’t found in my area. The app said that the possibilities for my area were Mute, Trumpeter, or Tundra swans. It said the Mute Swan is in my area year around. Trumpeter Swans breed north of us in a small area of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. The Tundra Swan flies through as they migrate to the far north. Unfortunately, I did not note the color of their beaks so I can’t pin it down closer than that. I will have to teach myself to observe more details of birds I see flying overhead…but I get so lost in the moment that I forget to scrutinize.
You might have noticed that I have begun making a few changes to this blog. I’ve added a couple new things, and I have to update some information that has become outdated. I hope you enjoy the changes!