Springtime in the Yard

WCSP 5-5-18-2371At last. It didn’t last long, but we had a beautiful weekend last week and the trees were excited and blooming and the birds were singing and courting and I was recovering by sitting still and watching it all.

While I sat there I counted five White-Crowned Sparrows in the yard. That’s an all-time high.  I am delighted that they considered my yard a stopover for at least week, on their way north to their breeding grounds. In particular, one male was singing loud and clear directly over me and as hard as I tried to get a video, I had too large a lens to capture his image with his song, but I did manage to record him on my cellphone which I was using to do a yard list on ebird.

The neighbors’ dog was out in their yard and she was going crazy over any squirrel that appeared.

The usual cast of characters included a Mourning Dove, an American Robin, and a few American Goldfinches.

There was some serious courting going on with a couple House Finches.

The Redbud is in full bloom.

HOSP 5-5-18-2452And it’s hard to find a spot in the yard that doesn’t have some wild violets blooming on it. My plan is to try to eradicate most of it today. Presently we have had cool, rainy weather, so it will be a muddy business to remove, but no more rain is predicted until later tonight, and this may be my last chance to remediate the landscape.

WCSP 5-5-18-2355

Squirrel 5-5-18-2295

I visited the Portage last Sunday to see how spring migration was unfolding there, and again yesterday to lead the first of my two bird walks donated to the Unity Temple auction. Both outings were full of birds and good times. I will be back with photos. My knee is not too happy about spending so much time negotiating uneven ground, but like physical therapy, in the end, I am regaining mobility. No pain, no gain. To be continued.


8 thoughts on “Springtime in the Yard

  1. I haven’t seen a White-crowned Sparrow for more than five years! Take it easy with the knee Lisa, don’t overdo or the therapy will be extended. Thanks for the post. 🙂

    • Thanks H.J. I am seeing more birds in the slow lane so maybe this is a blessing in disguise. As for the WCSPs, sorry they’re not stopping to see you. Maybe they have altered their routes a bit due to climate change.

    • Thanks, Tom. It’s funny about the violets because I have barely seen them before this year. But I think the cold spring and sudden warmup was to their liking. Along with the crab grass and soapworts and tiger lillies. Now I am glad my trees are grown up. But I guess my dream of planting all natives which require little attention once established was unrealistic at best. So I just ordered a new weed pulling tool and more gardening gloves. I’m in for the long haul. 🙂

  2. Love your images of the Black-crowned Sparrow, he is such a pretty, contrasting bird. I bet the squirrels laughed at the dog, lol. Very sweet shots of the House Finches. I know the need and reason for eradicating the wild violets, but gosh darn, they offer a pretty background on your last Back-crowned Sparrow! 🙂 Glad the knee’s doing better! PT sucks but works, lol.

    • Funny, if only the violets were red maybe I’d get a hummingbird to my feeders… I like to be out in the yard but I’m not a very devoted gardener, so I get reminders every spring that my dream of perennials taking care of themselves is just a dream. 🙂

  3. We’re also getting lots of White-Crowned Sparrows. Plus Baltimore Orioles and Catbirds, though the Rose-Breasted Grosbeaks seem to have already left us. And Sunday we saw a Blue-Gray Gnatcatcher, and because I had just seen it on your blog I knew what it was!

    • Excellent! I usually get the Rose-Breasted Grosbeaks but I haven’t been around any time they’ve arrived yet this spring. But I was very happy to see a Magnolia Warbler the other evening, just when I was getting ready to complain that I never get warblers. Your yard is a bird magnet… I don’t think I’ve ever had an Oriole or a Blue-Gray Gnatcatcher but luckily there are lots of them breeding at the Portage, so I do get to see them anyway.

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