Spring is standing on our doorstep and its signs are becoming more plentiful with each passing day.
The red-winged blackbirds have returned to our park and to marshes throughout the Chesapeake Bay region. Their distinct call and coloration appeal to senses dulled by the chills of a long and snowy winter.
Burning its way through the snow and ice, skunk cabbage is bursting with life. It is a rather unique plant because it exhibits thermogenesis—the ability to produce heat. Its inherent intrigue is fostered by its fanciful flower which seems ripped from Alice’s Wonderland.
Within the waving waters of the Chesapeake, the yellow perch are stirring. They begin their runs in late February, running from brackish to fresh water to spawn the next year’s young. These fish are as delicious as they are beautiful.
As we approach the end of March, listen carefully for the chorus of the spring peeper to begin. These small tree frogs will sing loudest throughout the month of April as the sun sets. It will not be long before the fluffy fluorescence of dandelions fills our meadows, and the fawns of white-tailed deer forage and take refuge amongst them.
These early signs of Spring are paralleled by the beginning of canoe and boating programs at Marshy Point Nature Center. Do not miss these limited opportunities to see the signs of the season firsthand and to learn more about them from our skilled naturalists.