Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Return of the Goose

Spring is officially on the horizon. A small contingent of very vocal Canada Geese have taken up residency on the lake ice down at Powderhorn Park.

I was out of town on business for a couple of weeks, so I was eager to get back and see how the transition to spring was coming along. Fortunately, I didn't miss the transition to spring, but it's definitely getting close to breaking out. On my first trip around the lake since getting back, I had my first double-digit species tally of the year (12!), including Ring-billed Gulls, Canada Geese, and Mallards. I also accidentally flushed a Cooper's Hawk from its perch, and watched as it flew off with some prey in its talons.

The Ring-billed Gulls have joined the Crows in trying to extract many of the small fish from the lake ice. There should be plenty to keep them busy for a while. During the last thaw, literally thousands of dead fish floated up to the lake surface and were re-frozen into the ice. I hope there are still some fish that survived the winter...

I'm eagerly awaiting the first Eastern Phoebe of the year. When he arrives, I guess spring will be here for good.

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