This is the time of year when we sun-starved New Englanders begin to celebrate the harbingers of spring. Here on Cape Cod there are several indicators that are cherished. They are:

  • Spring Peepers, also known on the Cape as “pinkletinks” Pinkletink
  • Ospreys — big hawks that nest in dead trees along the shore and divebomb fish. Osprey
  • Alewives — “herring” which swim up the coastal streams to spawn in the lakes and ponds. A precursor to the return of the striped bass.
  • Shadbush — a flowing shrub which marks the return of the alewives.
  • Dandelions — when the dandelions start blooming, the tautog, a kind of fish, are ready to start feeding.
  • The usual flowers, shrubs: forsythia, daffodils, hyacinths, etc.

I just love ticking off the return of all these indicators of better weather to come. As I get older, my sense of timing is getting better, and more nostalgic. I’m totally scrambled swapping back and forth between Cape Cod and North Carolina. Azaleas in Georgia, nothing in Cotuit. Pear trees in Durham, daffodils here.

Author: David Churbuck

Cape Codder with an itch to write

0 thoughts on “Harbingers”

  1. How much does the Osprey in the tuna tower option add to the value of a boat. is it approxmiately the same as racoons in the uncleaned bait tank?

  2. I laughed when I saw that bird a couple springs ago take up residence. I don’t think the owner was very happy to discover that sharp taloned surprise.

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