See Sit Spot Challenge at Kamana.org for more about the challenge.
Time of sit: 7:45-8:10pm
The sun had set shortly before I began my sit on the front step. Skies had cleared a bit after overcast conditions earlier, so there was still plenty of light left in the day. It started out fairly quiet around he neighborhood, though I could hear the gulls going at it down along the beach – I think they were still finding herring to feed on (the first spawn had started down there this morning). I was tempted to walk down and take a look, but decided to maintain my sit instead.
Wind was very light. I could see smoke from the neighbor’s woodstove drifting north, then later east, but none of the tree branches were moving. Temperatures were cool, but not cold, and I could strongly smell the scent of yellow cedar from Connor’s cedar bark materials still sitting on the porch.
About half way into my sit, a robin started calling. At first I had trouble placing it’s location as I was confused by the sound barrier of the house and the echoing calls. After a short time it moved a little bit and I realized it was north of my position (behind the house relative to me) – in a similar location where I heard my first robin singing of the spring last Saturday evening. Prior to singing the robin let out a few explosive bursts of chirps. When it finally got into singing, the song felt a bit aggressive/belligerent to me. Short, almost angry sounding phrases, with brief breaks in between. Perhaps this is the normal style of song for robins, but I don’t remember hearing them sound like this before, so I guess I’ll try to pay more attention as spring moves on. After a few minutes of singing, the robin was less constantly vocalizing, but still every so often would shout out another explosive set of chirps – this continued even after I went inside.
I don’t remember hearing any nearby song birds prior to the robin calling, but once it started, a Song Sparrow that seems to live in the cedar hedge across the drive (just south of west from my porch) made a few chirps. It almost seemed as though it could have been in response to the robin’s comments. A little later, shortly before I went inside, a couple of different times I heard a bird fluttering in the dense branches of that hedge followed by a bird popping out and flying a short loop back to the hedge accompanied by some chirping calls that might have seemed a little annoyed. It made me think there was probably more than one bird in there, and they were getting agitated about sleeping arrangements or something.
There was also a Pacific Wren that sang a couple of songs at widely spaced intervals, but it was down the hill to the southwest. I suppose it’s possible that it sang partially in response to hearing the robin sing, but I don’t really know.