Spring Has Yet to Spring

Even though it is mid-April, I have yet to see many signs of spring in my phenology spot. It is still very cold out, and while visiting it was even sleeting and snowing. Much of the ground and canopy is still brown with winter, but I did see more moss than last time and the birds were quite lively. I couldn’t get a picture of any of the birds this time because they were younger and staying mostly in the underbrush as they hopped around very quickly. I noticed that they were a bluish-gray color and seemed pretty small. I did not see any wildflowers, amphibians, or flowering trees.

The edge that I enter from is a good 10-minute walk away so it is mostly interior, however if you continue up the hill from my spot there is an exit to the back of a neighborhood—which could be pretty disruptive. The biggest edge effects that I notice are the sounds from the nearby highway, but there could also be drift from gardens in the neighborhood and maybe even house cats. When sitting in my spot, the wind is minimal even though I can hear it above the trees. It is also only a fairly dense canopy so the light and precipitation can still easily get to the ground here at this time of year. I do not think many forest interior species would choose to live here because there is a path right through the area and the neighborhood above is too close. The only species that I see often are chipmunks and birds.

River starting to flow again.

Sleet falling on the leaf litter.

A bud starting to turn green.