It was a long and very snowy winter, but spring has come to Connecticut. We've had a few flurries here and there since spring arrived, but overall, winter is giving way to the warm sunshine. We were visiting family one day when we looked out the window and saw this opossum.
Have you ever seen possum toes? Seeing them against the snow like this makes me want to put little mittens on this critter. :-)
The snow has melted in most places in Connecticut now, leaving pools of water behind that will soon be filled with little peepers. We tend to feel joyous about the leafing out and the blossoms because the bright colors are so welcome after months of the monochromatic landscape of winter. But, even before the flowers and leaves, there is a greater happening, as the birds return and woods come to life with the sounds of critters. It's wonderful to walk in the woods now and hear the excited peeps, twitters, cheeps, and chirps. We are beginning to hear the sounds of the peepers in the vernal pools formed by the spring rains and snow melt. Soon, I'll go there again and try to take pictures of the frogs and tadpoles under the water.
While some American Robins stay for the winter, we have now had the great spring influx of what is considered a harbinger of spring here. The Robin is Connecticut's official state bird. Their song is beautiful to hear while walking in the woods.
If you click on the pictures, you can see them larger. In this picture, there is a Mute Swan swimming past a previously well-used Beaver lodge and Canada Goose nest. We've seen it used as both over the years. The beavers tend to win on this one, as the nests for the geese often get flooded in the springtime.
Some of you might remember Veronica, the Red-Tailed Hawk. I've written about her before. It is believed that Veronica might have once been kept illegally as a pet and then released. She is wild and free, but sometimes visits this place where she will sit and let us get very close, which makes it nice to take pictures. It was extremely windy this day and she was being blown around, as was my camera.
If you're a follower of this blog, you might remember our baby squirrels. They are all grown up now, and I think (?), entering their third year. I still enjoy watching them... or are they watching me? I haven't seen much activity at their normal nesting hole yet, but I'll keep my eyes open.
We still spend part of each weekend helping my mother, but on the way to her place, we try to drive by local parks and take in a bit of nature when we can. Mallard drake showing off his pretty colors.
A female Red Bellied Woodpecker... the males are getting very beautiful now, but I haven't been able to get a picture yet. Hopefully, when they bring their babies to my trees and feeders, I'll have some good opportunities soon.
Female Cardinal. They look very different from their scarlet counterpart, but I think are equally as pretty.
A wild Turkey - we saw about a dozen of them. This one flew up onto a fence, then jumped back down and crossed the road to join the others that were in the distance in a field.
White Tailed Deer. They still have a bit of their winter coats, but are slowly losing their thicker hair and fur. We usually see about 7 or 8 when we go to Silver Sands in Milford, but on this day we saw over 50 of them, which really seems like it might be an overpopulation for the amount of land they are on.
Mute Swan. I haven't seen "our" Mute Swan at the pond in Litchfield for quite some time. I'll keep going back to see if I can find it.
This swan and another approached me and I actually had to step back to take a picture because it came too close.
Gives real meaning to "Go soak yer head." The birds really seem to enjoy the water now that the ice is gone. Not a swim I'd enjoy just yet. Brrrr
Reflections of spring as a tree begins to get leaves. The sap is running on maple trees. Soon there will be fresh maple syrup. The buds are formed on the trees now, the willows are golden, the forsythia beginning to bloom. The daffodils and crocuses are in bloom, which means another drive up to Northfield to see the daffodils and narcissus at Laurel Ridge.
And finally.... SPRING!
Thank you all for your visits, comments, and messages. I'm doing well, slowly recovering. Learning patience is not my favorite thing, but I'm trying to keep a good attitude. Good days and bad days - fortunately, mostly good.
Have a wonderful spring. I hope to post some spring pictures when things really come to life.