Just in time for Easter. Colors! This past week Mother Nature sure got busy decorating for Easter. Right on cue my daffodils burst from the brown ground of two weeks ago. Bright yellow burst of sunshine-like color shown by weeks end on the local forsythia too. Look up. Way up to the tops of the red maples, now too overflowing with bright red flowers now showering down on us. Not to mention the greens. Oh, our greens are just starting to give us the feel and sense of living in a wonderland of colors. There are way more trees that will be blooming in the near future from cherry pink to apple blossom white. New Hampshire is coloring up at a pretty good clip right now.
Just a reminder again to get that gallon of milk on the way home from work any of these raining afternoons that will go into an overnight rain. Let's leave the dark rainy roads to those hopping and crawling friends, like toads, frogs and salamanders.
And let's not forget that April is birthing month for many of our forest friends from foxes, and coyotes, and fisher and hawks and owls. Yes, baby season has arrived. While the first few weeks are spent in the dens or nest they too may be wondering by late month into early May. Mom and dad may be seen day and night foraging for food for their young of year who mom will be weaning by month's end. April into May is a very dynamic time of year for New Hampshire's fish and wildlife.
Yes, down on our coast, as well as in both the Connecticut and Merrimack rivers, river herring by the tens of thousands are migrating up from the sea to spawn as well. No doubt if you are paying attention, you might very well spot a Bald eagle or osprey catching one of these migrating herring to feed its young. Timing. Everything falls into place in the month of April into May for an abundance of food just as the young are hatching or ready to be weaned for the parents to find enough food to feed them.
Reflecting back a few decades it's hard to believe forty years ago there were No resident Bald eagles and only three or four pairs of ospreys, all way up on the Maine border. Now some seventy-five pairs of eagles' nest in New Hampshire and I'm thinking close to forty pairs of ospreys. Both, now nest nearly statewide. It took the clean water act of the early 70's to begin to clean up our rivers while by the late 1970's the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department set about restoring River herring to out rivers. What we see today, and pretty much take for granted, is the results of a half century of effort not on by the Fish and Game Department, but the hard working biologist at New Hampshire Audubon who have helped nurture both eagles and ospreys. Add in a number of other efforts like the US Fish and Wildlife Service and Land Trusts for protecting nesting habitats. In my fifty years as a wildlife biologist I have witnessed the efforts by many to restore fish and wildlife to numbers not seen in over a century. What a time to be alive to enjoy all that we have right in our own back yards and rivers. Hard for me to believe today that in my teens our rivers were really open sewers and there were not an ospreys or eagles to see. How lucky I am!