The Northeast Kingdom’s chapter of Audubon has a great Facebook page with wonderful photography by Tom Berriman and others. It also has excellent writing. Each month, Board Member Veer Frost writes an essay on nature in the NEK. Here is the start of the post for March which when I read it, pumped a little energy into my thinking about birding in March in northern Vermont. Here it is:
Birds in March
Anticipation! You can hear it in the first sweet notes beginning to brighten the clouded stretches of days we’re being granted just now in the Kingdom.
March brings us weeks that are neither winter nor spring, but at last we’ve reached the time of year when bitter Canadian fronts are followed by the irrepressible titmouse and chickadee tribes, sending songs out of the bare trees, like children thumbing their nose.
Woodpeckers may drum year round, but it’s in the weeks surrounding the spring equinox that their staccato banging against tree, house siding, and that perennial favorite, the tin roof, is most intense and frequent. By now, you’ve probably heard that the military-industrial powers are trying to figure out how a black and white urchin of a bird doesn’t ruin its brain with all that pounding, in order to copy its secret!
The skies over the Passumpsic are featuring a yet more raucous sound than tree drumming, but one that adds its own power to this season of hope.
Raven pairs fly overhead in close double formation, intensifying their bond, vocalizing their intention to each other to support the rigors of nesting and rearing young. The new life that we anticipate so yearningly in the growing light of March must, of course, include instinctive sacrifice, hard work, and the danger of predators.