Signs of Spring
The March equinox is just over a week away and spring migration is gathering momentum. What birds are you noticing? Report your first observations of Red-winged Blackbirds, Barn Swallows, Baltimore and Bullock's Orioles, and Common Loons to Journey North. For other species, use the "All Other Signs of Spring" reporting category.
Journey North Species
Red-winged Blackbird migration is still well ahead of other species. Journey North volunteers are noting their arrival in the Upper Midwest and Canada despite cold temperatures.
Kim in Freedom, WI: “First Red-winged Blackbird of the year in a marshy area.” (03/05/2022)
Connie in Harrowsmith, ON: “An exciting event! First Red-Winged Blackbird sighting, a true sign of spring here.” (03/05/2022)
Scott in Kinloss, ON: “First male RWBB sighted at Black Oil Sunflower seed feeder in am (07:30). -7deg C with windchill (wind SSE 9km/h)” (03/11/2022)
Barn Swallows are starting to be spotted in Texas.
Marian in Ben Arnold, TX: “Observed 3 birds [Barn Swallows] flying.” (03/09/2022)
Baltimore Oriole and Bullock’s Oriole
Early reports of Baltimore Orioles are coming from the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic.
Christy in Mt Pleasant, SC: “Both [Baltimore Orioles] came to cylinder feeder and picked mealworms out. They flew into the oak tree above and appeared to be in a standoff.” (03/03/2022)
Jenny in Silver Spring, MD: “Female Baltimore Oriole at feeder - Same one as 2 weeks ago or new one?” (03/05/2022)
In Louisiana, one lucky Journey North volunteer appears to have an overwintering Bullock’s Oriole in their area.
Diana in Schriever, LA: “This Bullock’s Oriole has been here since 11-16-2021! Last year had an immature in Feb/ March. Not sure if he’s the same??? Beautiful!” (03/04/2022)
No new reports of Common Loons. Has ice melted in your area? Common Loon arrivals often follow ice-out dates.
Chuck Henrikson’s Birding Report
Similar to others, Chuck Henrikson is also noting the return of Red-winged Blackbirds. What other birds is he observing at Journey North’s home base, the UW–Arboretum? Find out in his latest birding report.
“Last Wednesday, March 2nd, I heard the first Red-winged Blackbird singing on Curtis Prairie … The males come first and set up territories on Curtis Prairie. Then about a month later the females come to join the males, breed, build nests, lay eggs and raise young.”
Weather Forecasts for Migrating Songbirds
Dr. David Aborn’s weekly Weather Forecasts for Migrating Songbirds reports return next week!