Is spring on the way, or are the robins confused?

OK, I’m not complaining, so please don’t read this wrong. But…

Around these parts, one of the first signs of spring is the appearance of robins—those happy-go-lucky, red-breasted winged friends who seem to arrive out of nowhere.

Without a doubt, we can always rely on them showing up around mid-March, and it’s always a special moment when we call out: “Hey, there’s a robin in the neighbor’s back yard!”

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“Hey, everyone. It’s spring! Or is it?”

Well, last week (January 27th to be exact!), as I was grinding away on my MacBook and happened to glance out through my “window to the world,” I spotted one of those happy-go-lucky, red-breasted winged friends bouncing about in the back yard, carrying on as though the calendar was much farther along then it really was.

I sensed that the perky, little robin wanted to be seen, and I could almost hear her shouting: “Hello, everyone. It’s springtime!”

It was a delightful feeling seeing that bird, and one which made me feel good about the direction our winter was taking.

True, this winter has been a far cry from winters past—particularly last year’s—and the fact that I’ve only used our snow thrower two times is testament to that fact. Again, not complaining!

Not surprisingly, soon after the first robin showed, there was what appeared to be an invasion of her friends, immediate family, relatives, and various other hangers-on of the robin clan.

Our yard seemed to be cluttered with them as they bounced around in search of snacks and treats in the grass no longer covered with winter’s blanket.

After awhile this battalion of birds moved from the back yard and maneuvered around to the side lot where I snapped a couple of photos of this earlier-than-usual showing.

Later that afternoon, while I was busily stoking the Weber charcoal grill on our driveway, I could see that the gang of robins was still in the vicinity, but that they had moved across the street to the large empty lot. Again, I snapped a photo from my driveway, and one must look carefully to recognize them as robins. If nothing else, take my word for it.

Funny thing is, I haven’t seen them since that day. Our weather has been unseasonably pleasant and very March-like, so one would think that the happy creatures would have stuck around and continued whatever it is they do to herald the onset of spring—even though that’s still quite a ways off!

Perhaps one bird in this merry contingent checked the calendar and had an “oops moment” and delivered the news to the leader, causing the embarrassed congregation of happy-go-lucky, red-breasted winged friends to slink away, realizing that they’d jumped the gun just a bit.

Whatever the reasons: Why they arrived when they did and Why they didn’t stick around, the wonders of nature never cease to amaze me! Something was definitely at work in the universe of the robins, telling them it was time to pop in to northern Illinois.

Maybe they were just checking things out, making sure everything was in order for their real arrival in several weeks from now. Whatever their reasons, we’ll be looking for them once again and will welcome them back to stay a lot longer!

Not complaining…

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