Foam Lake Birding No. 174

No. 174
            In February I was optimistic about spring being just around the corner.  However, Mother Nature has had other ideas giving us more snow and record breaking cold temperatures.  Even so there are signs of the coming spring.  The large flocks of redpolls have thinned out considerably and the Juncos are back. 
            On April 9, in Saskatoon, I looked out of the window and saw a gopher sunning itself on a sidewalk.  About ten feet away a Robin was on the lawn looking for earthworms and appeared to have found one.  All this was occurring with temperatures well below freezing although the day was sunny.  Both seemed to have had enough of winter. 
           In my last article the location of the bluebird birdhouses was omitted.  The birdhouses are mounted randomly on fence posts on either side of the Yellowhead Highway from Wolverine Siding to the village of Plunkett.  There are not as many bird houses as there used to be as the deteriorated ones have not been replaced.  It would be a good cause for somebody to undertake. 
           I got an email from Dr. Stuart Houston from the University of Saskatchewan asking Saskatchewan residents to report Turkey Vulture sightings to him if the birds carry wing tags or are nesting.  If a tagged bird is spotted note on which wing the tag is located and of course where the bird was seen.  If nesting vultures are seen (usually in abandoned buildings) report the location.  If it is more convenient contact me and I will forward the information. 
           This week's picture of a Robin weathering a late spring snowstorm was taken several years ago but seemed very appropriate this spring.  The White Throated Sparrow was photographed during the same storm.  As of this writing neither bird is here yet but, I do expect both to be here by the time this goes into print. 
            Finally, I will be taking a hiatus of several weeks for surgery and some recovery time.  Hopefully, the spring birds are here by then and perhaps even some surprise visitors.