Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Spinter, er, Wring?

It's 60 degrees, but there are still several feet of snow on the ground. Birds of every variety have arrived on a stiff south wind, but squirrels are at the feeder like there's a January storm coming.

Welcome to Spinter. Warmer than winter, but you still need a shovel to take a walk.

Several patches of ground are visible again since the last storms. Big brown circles of dry grass and needles under the red pines on our south-facing hill are simmering in the sun. Over lunch I put on the knee-high rubber boots and thought I'd slop around a bit by the apple trees. Too much snow there, so the dogs and I crawled up under the pines and sat in the sun for a bit. Before long the two black-and-white border collie mutts were panting after soaking up the heat. Lucky dogs. The wind, though out of the south, still has a sting--so no panting for me.

Besides sting, the wind brought us our first raptors today. One appeared to be a rough legged hawk, a shaggy and bedraggled splotch of gray and white wheeling quickly over the yard. Two male flickers are having words over the 10x30 patch of driveway that's visible. Easy boys, more real estate is on its way, day by day.

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