My adventures in the woods, streams, rivers, fields, and lakes of Michigan

The first sign of spring!

Sorry for another post so soon, and neither the photos or video are very good, but I have managed to find the first real sign that spring is on its way.

I thought that the red-tailed hawks had been acting a bit frisky lately, as if they were flirting to strengthen their pair bonding before the actual mating season arrived. One can never be sure of that though, it could be a pair hunting together, with no thoughts of mating.

However, we had two warmer days in a row, and even though it began to turn colder, we did get a little sunshine for a while. We were on the cusp of the storm that’s going to hit the northeast with a nasty blizzard, all of that went just to the south of my location. So, I could look to the north and see sunshine, and looking to the south, I saw the storm clouds as the storm tracked south of here.

Anyway, I got to the sheltered area of the park that I walk around home, down in the valley near the creek and out of the wind. The brush is very thick along the creek, and there was a large flock of mixed species of birds feeding in the brush.

The big news is that a few of the birds were warming up their vocal chords in preparation for true spring when it arrives. While some of the birds were out in the open, feeding their faces….

Female northern cardinal

Female northern cardinal

…there was a male house finch hidden back in the brush just singing away!

Hidden male house finch singing

Hidden male house finch singing

You can just make him out in that photo, but of course you can’t hear him singing. So, I switched over to shoot a video, and while you can’t really see the finch, you can certainly hear him!

I tried several times to find the finch in the brush while shooting videos, but I had a hard enough time finding him through the viewfinder, using the LCD display, he was impossible to see. Then, there’s the background noise of the traffic going past the park, but you get the idea, the birds have begun to sing their spring songs!

I also heard a male cardinal practicing a few bars of his songs, as well as a goldfinch, but they weren’t as persistent as the finch. All it took was a bit of sunshine, and almost right on cue, the last week of January, the first singing birds. While there’s still an entire month of winter left here, just hearing a few birds singing really lifted my spirits, and now, the winter won’t seem as hard to take.

So, I hope that hearing a bird singing lifts your spirits as well, especially those of you that are about to be hit by the blizzard! Spring is coming, we just need to hold on a little longer.

That’s it for this one, thanks for stopping by!


18 responses

  1. Thanks for going to the trouble to set up a video link, great to know that spring might be just around the corner. Glad the storm missed you.

    January 27, 2015 at 3:14 am

    • Thank you Susan! I’m really glad the storm missed too, I never look forward to driving at those times. I may have gotten overly excited about one bird singing, but I’m already tired of winter and looking forward to better weather.

      January 27, 2015 at 4:56 pm

  2. I love the beautiful rich warm colours in the cardinal picture and thank you for sharing the video and your happiness about spring approaching. I only started to read this blog in late autumn/winter I think so I am looking forward to your excited Spring posting. πŸ™‚
    We’ve been seeing the precautions taken in New York city for the blizzards. My first thought is always for the homeless. Do they all have shelter to go to? I hope so. It’s hard for me to imagine what something like a blizzard feels like during our hot days.

    January 27, 2015 at 7:27 am

    • Thank you Jane! Yes, I get worked up about spring here in Michigan, it’s beautiful when the flowers and butterflies, along with our summer resident birds return! Of course part of that may come from having endured four to five months of cold, snow, and mostly cloudy days. πŸ˜‰ Hearing the birds singing on a warm spring day with the scent of wildflowers in the air is truly Heaven on Earth!

      January 27, 2015 at 5:05 pm

  3. That finch’s song is the best one I’ve heard in a long time. I heard a black capped chickadee singing his mating call the other day too. I’m hoping for an early spring, even though it’s snowing at the moment.

    January 27, 2015 at 9:27 am

    • Thanks Allen! The birds are never wrong, just a bit early sometimes. πŸ˜‰ I hoped that you aren’t buried inn snow from the blizzard!

      January 27, 2015 at 4:57 pm

      • No, there were blizzard conditions in parts of the state but I only got 6 inches of snow in my yard. It wasn’t historic!

        January 27, 2015 at 6:30 pm

  4. Love your optimism in thinking that you have just one month left until Spring! Good luck with that (I’ll probably remind you of this near February’s end, when you are digging your way out of some new snowstorm).

    Great idea to post the sound.

    January 27, 2015 at 9:49 am

    • Thanks Judy! I know that I went a little overboard, but being the optimist that I am, any sign of spring is great news to me, even if I do have to dig out of several more snowstorms. πŸ˜‰

      January 27, 2015 at 4:59 pm

  5. I’m not getting so excited yet in spite of your bird song. I’m glad that you missed the snow.

    January 27, 2015 at 7:09 pm

  6. Loved hearing the chirping and singing! Thank You!

    January 27, 2015 at 8:14 pm

    • Thank you Nancy!

      January 27, 2015 at 8:33 pm

  7. You are so right — a little birdsong does really brighten things up!! We went down to Columbus to visit our son for his birthday on the 18th. We drove down the Saturday before and took the rural route through some small towns with antique stores. One of them was Mount Victory and while we were going in and out of the shops, the sun was shinning and you could really hear the birds singing. At one place there were a bunch of birds bathing in a big puddle of melted snow. I commented to Mark that you could tell the birds were happy with the sun and the warmer temperatures! πŸ™‚

    January 27, 2015 at 8:59 pm

    • Thank you Amy! Our feathered friends enjoy a sunny day even more than we do!

      January 28, 2015 at 3:05 am

  8. Thanks for sharing this! (TV voice:) “This moment of spring, brought to you by House Finch.” πŸ˜‰

    January 28, 2015 at 6:21 am

    • Thanks Lori! I wish that I had thought of announcing it that way. πŸ˜‰

      January 28, 2015 at 11:07 pm

  9. I really loved hearing the finch’s song. I have been hearing a lot of our songbirds tuning up here recently and it sounds so good after months of no songs at all.

    January 28, 2015 at 1:16 pm

    • Thank you Clare! There’s no better sound to me than that of singing birds, so I do tend to go overboard when I hear the first one of each new year.

      January 28, 2015 at 11:08 pm