We are saddened to learn that Paige Crosby's father, Silas Axtell, passed away on April 27. Friends who wish to send condolences to Paige and the family should use the following address: Mr. & Mrs. Peter Crosby, 144 Highland Ave., St. Johnsbury VT 05819.
This is another cool day with no sunshine and sprinkles of rain. Much more like weather we would expect to have in April, but each week we see the temperature rise a degree or two, so there must be better, warmer weather somewhere down the road apiece. It's good weather to be working outside, if you can dodge the showers. The grass is greening up, but slowly, but the greatest sign of real spring is the birds. When I walked at noon, the jays and woodpeckers were busy calling back and forth - there were some geese honking somewhere towards the pond (we hope they are just passing through, not building nests). The birds know there's only a brief window for them to build nests and raise a family before it's time to head south again.
I haven't paid much attention to the web cam at the osprey nest in Brennan, Maine this year, but "Rachel" and "Steve" returned on schedule in mid-April. Rachel laid her first egg on April 29th, the 2nd one appeared on May 2, and there may be a third perhaps tomorrow. Last year she laid three eggs, but one didn't hatch; then disaster struck when an eagle swooped in and got first one baby and then the remaining one. Steve and Rachel remained at the nest for a while, and by summer's end were only there intermittently. The summer before last I watched them raise three healthy youngsters, and it was very interesting. I hope there's no predator that will interfere with their family this year.
There is also a live camera at the Washington, D.C. nest of a pair of bald eagles, "Mr. President" and "First Lady." Two apparently healthy chicks have hatched. I don't know what the wildlife folks have named the chicks - I haven't visited the site often, but there are probably comments and information there, too, like the Maine site. Most of the time it's fun to be able to see wild creatures raising their young, but when predators or some other catastrophe strike, it's really hard to watch.