Thursday, March 5, 2009

They're back!

Spring arrives on the wings of a red-winged blackbird.  As I walked outside this morning, I heard the familiar call, the indescribable trill... I can't describe it, but you can here it here... and I headed to the lake.  Before I even got close, I could see one, sitting on the tallest branch of a bur oak tree. He spread his tail, bobbed his head, and gurgle-yelled at me.  But that wasn't the original speaker; he was to my left in the old cattail reeds.  They are all over!

Of course, this means I missed the pioneer, the first brave boy back.  (And I definitely missed the even braver female pioneers, who should have returned -- quietly -- in advance of the males.)  But now, they're here in full force, and spring can safely arrive.

Actually, red-winged blackbirds apparently stay in this area all winter (as the range map at the above link clearly shows).  But in the winter, they hunker down and leave the wetland areas.  So in fact, they haven't returned to the area, but they have returned to their summer/breeding homes.

And welcome home, I say!

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