There is a daylight half moon this evening that will be waxing toward full over the next twelve days or so. It reached its highest point tonight around 7:30, which means that tomorrow evening I’ll see it there around 8:20. This will be the third lunar month I’ve watched since my diagnosis. (Oddly, my chemotherapy drug comes in twenty-eight doses.) This is the third lunar month I’ve been lying beside this window overlooking the river & when I began the robins were just establishing territories & building nests; tonight the juveniles are skittering among the lower branches while up above their elders sing their evening songs.
We’ve had a lot of rain the last couple of days, but this morning sunlight is flooding the maple trees. There are a couple of robins–a mated pair perhaps–singing back & forth from the tops of two nearby maple trees. Not competitive singing, just a duet. Maybe they are teaching their fledglings the basic repertoire of the robin tribe. Â They do something to intensify the qualities of the morning. The sunlight on green maple leaves is a degree more intense when they are singing; the coolness of the air wafting through an open window is just a little sharper; the bark of the dogs across the river just that much more distinct.
The robins’ dusk chorus ran from about 7:15 to 8:00 this evening. This is what might be called passive territorial singing–the birds take positions in the sunlit tops of trees, no bird nearer than around 250â€² from any other. They then run through their repertoire until, presumably, they get tired of hearing their own voices & head off to roost. Not all of them I heard this evening were necessarily males, as has been commonly thought. Recent research shows that females sing this way too.
The moon is waxing gibbous, not quiteÂ Â¾ full. It looks like it will reach its zenith tonight around 9:30, just after passing over the gap between the two biggest maple trees in the yard.
The spring dawn chorus, robins for sure but some finches too, I think, began in complete darkness at 4:13 am EST. I began to be able to distinguish clouds in a lightening sky at 4:26. It is now 4:30 & the chorus continues, though only robins now & even they are beginning to get on with the day. I think I can detect some males defending territory.
Saw the first goldfinches of spring today. They must have been shocked at the amount of snow, but happy, I presume, at the full bird feeders. The breeding plumage of the males not quite filled out, rough drafts of summer.