It has been a long, cold winter, but dark nights and icey grey days are slowly giving way. Yesterday was the first day of spring; the vernal equinox. Yesterday, there were as many hours of light as there were hours of darkness. From this point until June 21st, the days will grow longer; there will be more hours of light with each passing day.
The air is still cold (-5 degrees C yesterday) and the ground is still frozen, but it is light until 6:00 in the evening, the snow has melted from the ground, and the rivers are swollen from melting snow.
The birds are returning. Canadian Geese fly noisily in formation overhead. Turkey Vultures circle the escarpment with wings spread wide. Hundreds of iridescent Grackles swarmed the trees beside the river for a day last week. The Swans, Mallards and Canada Geese have re-appeared in the harbour scouring the shoreline for food. American Coots, Hooded Merganzers, and Pie-billed Grebes feed in open water on the edge of the marsh.
The birds are staking their claims from tree-tops to marsh reeds. They are honking and singing; feeding and nesting; pairing and mating. The world is full of life once more; it is full of colour and sound and activity. It is Spring!!
- The Vernal Equinox: Spring Begins Today (donnallong.com)
- Vernal Equinox Marks First Day of Spring Today (space.com)
- Spring arrives, sort of (insidehalton.com)
- Spring, delayed. (lusaorganics.typepad.com)
- A Very Vernal Equinox To You (mothergoosesmiles.wordpress.com)
- Spring Equinox Arrives Tomorrow, But Where Is The Warm Weather? (wjla.com)
- Celebrating Ostara (naturalpantheist.wordpress.com)
- spring is sprung! (tingilinde.typepad.com)
And it couldn’t come soon enough! Your description of the birds is at once evocative and hopeful. It’s the perfect post with which to start my day!
So glad to hear it!!
Hi Kim, yes Spring is officially here.. although you would hardly think so looking out my window… Lovely to see the birds returning and here it looks as if Winter is still got its teeth into yet a while.. Loved your photos.. :-) Sue
Thanks Sue….it has been a long winter all around the northern hemisphere this year!! But that is part of what makes us appreciate Spring all the more! Kim
Thanks so much for the nod to Mother Goose! I’m so glad to hear your bird report and wonder where in the world you are to have so many waterfowl at your convenience! Blessings all over your spring day!
Hi…I live in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada….our city wraps around the tip of Lake Ontario which is the size of a small ocean. Where are you writing from?? Kim
We live just west of Chicago — not a LOT of exotic waterfowl here, but if I get in the car and drive to a park, I can probably see a goose… :-)
I wish it were that way here, we are still having snow storms! We got a foot of snow last week alone. Come summer thought we have sunlight until midnight.
That sounds tough….and the idea of 18 hour days is something to hang on to!!
At least there’s lots of sun in the winter here. :)
The 18 hour days, we have to have dark curtains over the windows for night time or our bodies don’t get sleepy, the melatonin doesn’t kick in.
it’s interesting! lol
What a wonderful area to live with swans floating by! Thanks for sharing your pictures.
Hi There…it is funny. Hamilton was a Steel Town with two big steel factories providing all the jobs in the City. Both are located right on the bay in the downtown core, so that is what people think of when they think of Hamilton. But we are also nestled at the end of Lake Ontario and have the Niagara Escarpment (a limestone cliff that was once the reef in an ocean) running through our City. SO, we also have beautiful conservation areas and some great “birding” which fewer people know about. It sounds like I need to remind myself about what a treasure that is!! Kim
Kim, Your eyes see beauty everywhere.It’s who you are and why you work so hard on behalf of our dear Mother Earth. You see the world more beautifully than cameras can take pictures, but, hey, mere equipment is never gonna catch up to eyes that see with the heart. :)
Yay, for your Spring! I can see, feel, smell and hear it! :)
Spring is a glorious season….and I often think that we would not really appreciate it if we did not experience winter. Do you get Spring the same way in the southern hemisphere???
Oh yes! Of course, we’re heading into winter now, but those first days of Spring are sublime :)