Surprise Snow


Mother Nature had a surprise for us this second day of spring:  a morning snow shower with about 2.5″ of white stuff.  All the snow had melted and the ground was drying out nicely.  Looks like we’re back to mud for a bit.

The snow is hard on newly returned migratory birds.  A flock of around fifty blackbirds descended on the feeder this morning.  These animals are smart and wary.  The slightest human movement sends all the birds flapping for cover.

a4They sit in the trees, wait and watch for humans.  When the coast looks clear, one bird will fly down to the feeder and start spilling seeds on the ground.  a2Soon, all the birds hurry back to feast.  They watch the bird on the feeder, he is the lookout.  At his warning, they scatter to safety again.a1

Poor things.  They must be starving after the long flight.  There is very little for them to eat here this early, even if the ground is bare.  We go through a lot of birdseed this time of year.  Things are so tough, the red-winged blackbirds scrounge at the feeder until warmer weather provides their natural food.

I suppose if we did not feed them, the migrating birds would return to more southerly areas to wait for spring.  I hate to take away the food because the cardinals and other winter birds that count on us would go hungry.  So, in spring we lay out a smorgasbord for the ravening flocks of grackles and blackbirds.