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Poor Will's Almanack: February 28 - March 6, 2017

Sandhill Cranes
Mark Moschell
Flickr Creative Commons

Each event in nature always points to other events, one part linked to so many other parts and ultimately to the whole. So the robin chorus that begins this month along the 40th parallel, is a mine from which one might draw out numberless concurrent happenings, all of them together making spring.

In this month of the Robin Chorus Moon when robins start their singsong calls in the morning twilight, then pollen forms on pussy willow catkins, and the first mosquito bites. Moths appear at your porch light.

Worms rise through the ground to mate as the sun warms the mulch above them and the moon waxes. The tufted titmouse courts in spirals. Flickers and purple martins migrate, and willow trees glow yellow-green.

By full moon time, paired geese trumpet and converse. Turkeys gobble in the woods. And in the final days of the final lunar phase, trillium, hgepatica, Dutchman’s britches, bloodroot, spring beauty, violet cress and lesser celandinew prophesy the sweetest time of year.

The Robin Chorus Moon follows these and so many more events. It shadows and foreshadows them, possibly causes  some of them, connects them from the sky. It accompanies and enhances the waves of high and low pressure that cross the land, reflects the equinoctial sun and finally grows dark as sandhill cranes start to migrate, stirred by the more radical warming and leafing and blossoming forces of the middle spring to come.

This is Bill Felker with Poor Will’s Almanack. I’ll be back again next week with notes for the fourth week of early spring In the meantime start your predawn vigils. Listen for robins.

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Bill Felker has been writing nature columns and almanacs for regional and national publications since 1984. His Poor Will’s Almanack has appeared as an annual publication since 2003. His organization of weather patterns and phenology (what happens when in nature) offers a unique structure for understanding the repeating rhythms of the year.