Looked like it might become a nice day. A crow was saying caw-caw, caw-caw (a phrase I know well but cannot yet translate). And the cardinal sang. And I heard a nuthatch out there beeping. And although an overcast sky greeted us first thing, the sun soon broke through, as the weather folks promised.
The neighbor’s song sparrow trilled and chimed. The house finch across the street sang loud and long. I heard the voice of a robin,chickadees, and a titmouse—the titmouse, in fact, was whistling in direct response to the cardinal, whose song began with two long notes that sounded an awful lot like the titmouse’s call. Meanwhile, the nuthatch kept at it, and I noticed a pair of them were clearing out a nesting cavity in one of the big oaks out back. Before long the dog got antsy, and so did I, so about the lunch hour we headed for a quick walk up Beech Hill.
Early on, where the trail ran along the stone wall, a red squirrel froze and watched us. The air seemed almost warm, and the sun was bright, and I felt like jogging up the steep stretch of open trail, so that’s what we did. I heard chickadees and a titmouse. Then, suddenly, a hawk appeared—floating up over a grassy bronze rise on slightly tilted wings. I had my camera out and so tried for photos. Didn’t get anything outstanding, but I did confirm it as a northern harrier. It was a nice surprise. Marsh hawks like Beech Hill.
It was a sunny landscape. A bright, happy view. We met no one else up there today, despite lovely weather and the lunch hour.
Rode my bicycle this afternoon. I can’t get enough of that bike, it seems.
At about 6 o’clock, my friend Kristen stopped by to join Jack and me in our planned walk along the breakwater. What a pleasant little hike. Hardly any wind—in fact, neither the harbor side nor the island side showed much of a chop at all—and there were no clouds to block the warming sun. We saw mergansers, eiders, loons, long-tailed ducks. We saw black-backed gulls, herring gulls. We heard the cardinal and song sparrow from the shore. At one point, as I was snapping photos of a closeby diver, it rose and spread its wings. A nice surprise.
As we left, I heard the voice of a grackle—the last bird on my list this day.
Tonight, no spring peepers (although I hear they’re in the neighborhood).
Great black-backed gull
Tags: American crow, American robin, black-capped chickadee, common eider, common grackle, common loon, great black-backed gull, herring gull, house finch, long-tailed tuck, northern cardinal, northern harrier, red-breasted merganser, rock pigeon, song sparrow, tufted titmouse, white-breasted nuthatch