Spring Returns to the Skies

A huge snowstorm blew into MN this week – it certainly still feels like winter, with so much snow on the ground.  But since I spent all that time outside shoveling, I counted 3 flocks of   canada geese flying overhead in just half an hour. I’d nearly forgotten about the geese, but when I heard their familiar honking I realized how few birds there have been around here; especially waterfowl.  Well, they’re back, along with budding maples and daylight lasting until past 6 o’ clock.geese

SNOW!!!???

Well, I guess we’ve officially begun our 6 months of winter – it snowed yesterday. At least it’s not looking like last winter, with no snow at all. But it’s not even halloween yet… (I predict of lot of hockey player costumes.) The snow’s melted by now, though. *keeping fingers crossed for nice long indian summer* Ahh, Minnesota. 😉

Summer Birds

During winter, wildlife generally stays about the same, but now that summer’s here, I’ve seen all kinds of new animals. Mostly birds. In the last couple of weeks there’s been this red-headed woodpecker hanging around. He was attracted by some suet we put up, and started to visit our yard regularly, but at the same time the grackles found the suet and pretty much devoured it. Once it was gone, he stopped coming. We got some more, but I bet the same thing will happen.

I saw one of the eagles from the nest a couple of days ago. It was flying to its nest with a giant fish locked in its talons. Pretty cool.

I also spied an oriole hanging about by the river. They’re hard to miss, what with their bright feathers, but I haven’t seen them here before. I’ll have to get my oriole feeder up.

In other news, I’m going to be gone for a few weeks, so no more posts for a while. But I’ll have things to tell when I get back! 

Flowers!

It’s been warm here for a couple months already, which has gotten the plants all confused. They’ve been sticking more to their usual schedule. So in the past several weeks, they’ve blossomed with beautiful flowers, although some of them have already shed their flowers for thick leaves. The lilacs smell wonderful, although in early spring there was a kind of magnolia that made the air smell like cinnamon. The apple trees are magnificent – they are covered in delicate flowers, and each tree has its own shade, from pinkish-white to magenta.

There are plenty of flowers on the ground, too. Dandelions (of course), bluets, violets and white violets. The tulips aren’t wild, but they are everywhere anyway, and they  come in every color imaginable.

apple blossom (left) and white violet

apple blossom (left) and white violet

Leaf Art

Oaks don’t turn any brighter in the fall. Just a dull brown.

The trees have dropped most of their leaves now, & it’s interesting to see all the shapes and colors nature comes up with.

The leaves end up in the most interesting shapes. I found these two stuck together.

 

Elms turn an orange/yellow color. They’re one of the most common trees.