Birds Return

With spring, the migratory birds return.  Robins litter the garden beds and lawn, running here and there at speeds that should be impossible on such tiny legs.  Their quizzical song can’t pick a melody and stick to it, yet it is still so nice.  The return of these feathered friends is another indication of the onset of warm, growing weather, and we are glad to have it.


My favorite wild bird these days is easily the hermit thrush, which is usually singing around sunrise and sunset.  This happens to be the same time I tend the chickens, letting them out in the morning and locking them up safely at night.  The hermit thrush welcomes me each time, high up on a tree out of sight.  Its call is like nothing else on earth.  Check out this video with beautiful footage of the bird singing some of its chilling repertoire:

Sometimes during the day, I’m surprised to find our free ranging hens deep in the woods, exceedingly far from their coop.  Perhaps they are longing to be wild, too, after the long winter of being literally “cooped” up.  They casually browse in the leaves for bugs and have no regard for property lines or my desire to know they are safe.  A few times in the past weeks I’ve sought them out and shooed them back toward the coop, telling them they should stay in sight.  But they always go deeper.  I used to worry they would get lost and spend a stressful, dangerous night in the woods, but every night when I go to lock them up, they are all in the coop, patiently listening to the hermit thrush with me.  They always return.

free range chickens in the woods