Spring is too fast for me. I’m out of practice with how fast the woods and its inhabitants can change. I must still be in the mindset of mid-winter when there’s always tomorrow. In spring, if I wait until tomorrow, I’m already behind.
So, let’s play catch-up today. The Eastern Kingbirds have arrived. The are officially quite early this year. Last year I first saw them on May 19. This year I first saw them on May 6. In 2006 I first had them on May 12. This is a species where I’m pretty sure I didn’t just didn’t see them for a week or so after they arrived. Usually I find these birds sitting on the wires at the bottom of the slopes at Roundtop. It’s one of their favorite spots, and I will see them there virtually every day until they leave again in late summer. So I’m pretty confident that my recorded first sightings are actual arrival dates, give or take no more than a day or so.
The first new Canada goslings also made their first appearance yesterday evening. This pair has produced just three babies, which is a not unusually-sized brood for them. For whatever reason, this pair tends toward small broods. The geese always announce their births, or at least, the geese always set up a racket the night before I see the first babies. The mad honking happens each year with such regularity that it seems a deliberate "announcement." Perhaps it is. Perhaps not. Perhaps it’s only that they are warning other geese or ducks away from the new hatchlings.
I am finally starting to hear ovenbirds in something resembling normal numbers now Usually they arrive at the same time as the wood thrush. This year they are a little late, but they are here now.