It’s official, spring has sprung! I probably haven’t ever mentioned that I’m not a fan of winter. Well I’ll just say it, I like warm seasons!!! Although hot summer days are my favorite, it’s the signs of spring that fill me with hope for the seasonal change.
Most schools in our area are on spring break this week. I was initially torn if I should indulge in a break, or if I should push on for an early start to our summer break. As we had weekend sunshine and delightfully warm weather, I chose to let the forecast be my guide. We’re on a partial break. We’ve put our core studies aside and are enjoying sunshine, nature studies, and time with public school friends.
With the arrival of spring temperatures we have noticed an increase in bird population, prompting the subject of our nature studies. A trip to our local library has provided an abundance of material and field guides on our feathered friends.
We began our studies by reading The Boy Who Drew Birds a story of John James Audubon. The littles were amused by the accounts of early scientists’ speculation that birds hibernated, and the suggestions of what that may have looked like. By the books end they were encouraged to begin their own observations. They eagerly looked up local area birds in field guides and considered if they should pull out their drawing supplies or cameras.
We first developed a love for bird watching a few years ago when Robins nested in a hanging flower pot on our back deck. It was a very exciting summer as we tracked the progress of egg laying, chick growth, and first flight.We are becoming avid birdwatchers and hope to become better at identifying different species. Last summer we not only observed birds in our yard, but also monitored Osprey in Sandpoint Idaho via an online web cam. That began our interest in birds of prey and our search for other online bird resources. We discovered a site with Bald Eagles, and recently discovered the nest is active again this year with two recently hatched eaglets. Cornell University All About Birds has to be my favorite site as they not only have several online web cams, but an abundance of helpful information.
As the forecast for our week is expected to end in rain, I hope to use our indoor time to research and plan how to better attract birds. The littles really liked the idea of adding a nest box that they could build with dad, so I think I’ll consider participating in NestWatch.
What are your favorite birds in your area?