It is definitely spring. The first broad scatter of dandelions are out, and all the bulb flowers - tulips, crocuses, daffodills. The callary pears are edging into leaf, most of their flowers gone, while the other are in their prime but for dogwoods which are just filling the roadsides with their flights of white and pink, grace notes in the dark green. Other trees are leafing, too.
The birds know it, too. First, all the seasonal migrants have gone, and come. No more juncos - hello to redwing females, to the flickers, and to the grackles. (It's true none of these are summer-only residents, but they tend to flock elsewhere in the winter and show up right around here only when spring comes.) In fact, the redwings are dueling madly for the territory around the pond; where three were last year I saw six this morning- three in position, two at the pond and one at the wet, reedy spot down by the bridge; and three more jockeying around the periphery, displaying and calling and chasing each other. There's another further along the creek, too. Two females at least - they're so much harder to spot.