When we think of the first signs of spring, we often think of the Robin. Actually though, the first birds to return to our part of the state each spring are the Red-Winged Blackbirds, Sandhill Cranes and maybe you’ll even see a Great Blue Heron show up as well. Even the Killdeer generally show up in farm fields of Wisconsin before the robins make it back across our borders sometime in April.
If you have a backyard bird feeder, this is the time to start watching your goldfinches as well. As you might know, they hang around all winter dressed in their olive-drab. But if you start looking closely in early March, you’ll see the first signs of their bright yellow summer coat coming through! By May, the males will have turned bright yellow once again.
Now’s the time to keep your eyes and ears focused! In the next week or so, when you see the first red-winged blackbird or hear one calling from a still frozen marsh, you’ll know the king of spring has returned. Warmer weather is soon to follow…, by order of the king.