Birds and butterflies in this “early” springPosted on April 1st, 2010 1 comment - Add a comment >>
We have come to expect the normal Adirondack spring consisting of cold spells with snow, followed by some melting, followed again by a cold spell with sleet or something miserable like that.
However, Spring 2010 is fast becoming the most enjoyable to many “spring-seeking” outdoor enthusiasts. The record high for Saranac Lake on this date is 74 degreesF set in 1989…we were just 4 degrees shy of that today.
Seems this warm spell has set into motion many winged migrants taking to the airways. I saw my first mourning cloak butterfly today. Fascinating to think that this butterfly(in adult stage) can hibernate through a wicked Adirondack winter! What a pleasure to see it floating through the air.
Looking at all the internet reports of bird sightings these past few days reveal that bird migration has gotten a bit of a jump with this warm air from the SW.
I saw my first great blue heron, eastern meadowlark, eastern phoebe, eastern bluebird(do you sense a direction pattern here?), and my first merlin(small falcon) all today.
While working in St Lawrence County recently, I’ve spotted many daffodils just beginning to poke out of the warming soil in many front yards. Also noted today….very small, dark brown spiders that were floating in the air on the ends of silken threads that they released into the wind. They will float on the wind until the threads catch on to some object…usually my head!
Keeping track of spring sightings(a.k.a.: Phenology), or any season for that matter, has become a favorite activity for many naturalists, and birdwatcher alike. Get a few field guides for your library and hit the trails.
Here’s to “earrach”…. “spring” in the Irish language.
Photo credit: Eastern Meadowlark-Brian McAllister
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