In truth it wasn’t much of a winter, with only a few cold days and a modest amount of snow. But now a wide variety of returning species are expressing their faith that an early spring is in progress.
Mild temperatures did not, of course, mean that the winter was easy for all creatures. The lack of any shore ice left the shoreline open to the pounding of the waves, which were many and fierce. By the end of February a beloved tree was toppling into the water.
Marshes were still frozen at the beginning of March and this Fox could still take its shortcut across the harbour channel.
By mid-March, though, a wide variety of migratory ducks – Ring-Necked, Scaup, Mergansers, Mallards, Long-tails – had arrived and the Muskrats were enjoying the open water too.
In the thickets around the marshes, winter stalwarts the Cardinal and Downy Woodpecker have been joined by Cedar Waxwings.
Most arresting of all on a sunny Sunday morning was a Broad-Winged Hawk taking a long look across the marsh.
Photo at top of page: Broad-Winged Hawk, Profile (click here for larger view)