March is pregnant with anticipation. Like a mother anxious to bring her child into the world, our bodies are ready to shed the heavy clothes of winter, to feel the freedoms of running on solid ground rather than carefully picking our way across sheets of ice, to feel the warmth of the sun on our cheeks and for the nights to retreat into the long days of summer.
Truly a transition month at Dunrovin, the first of March brings flocks of red-winged blackbirds to mob the bird feeders stationed above the ospreys’ nest; yet by the end of the month, the bird feeders have been removed from the nest perch and Harriet has either already reclaimed her nest or is within days of landing. Similarly, our horses begin the month fat and happy in their winter field, free from human interference, only to return to their stalls by the end of the month to get back into shape and go back to work delighting kids of all ages with trail rides across the river and through the woods. March’s melting snows expose the very first tender blades of green grass that appear in sheltered areas. It seems everyone and everything is on the move, readying themselves for the growing season.
March’s prominence on our annual calendar has been even more solidified by the installation of the web camera above the ospreys’ nest. When the camera first went up in March of 2011, we thought of it as a terrific scientific opportunity to get to know the complexities of osprey ecology. We had absolutely no understanding of how our becoming involved with the daily lives of the ospreys would impact us in so many ways. We grew to know the birds as individuals with very distinct personalities. We were awed by the birds’ total commitment to life and all of its struggles. We connected with people from across the world who watched along with us. We shared the wonder, we conversed via twitter, Facebook, and chat, and we became friends. People traveled here to see us and the birds. Over the past six years, the ospreys have transformed Dunrovin in a number of beautiful ways by stretching our reach across the globe, by inspiring and connecting us with the magic of nature and life, and by teaching us not only about the rhythms, challenges, and joys of bird life, but exposing something about ourselves in the process.
And it all begins each year in March. Our hearts, minds, and eyes are focused on the skies as the ospreys ferry in the spring and summer seasons each year. May this March be kind to our ospreys as they wing their way north to join us in their summer home. May this March be generous to all of us in the Dunrovin family and herald a peaceful and productive spring/summer ahead.
The DaysAtDunrovin online community owes its existence to the Dunrovin ospreys. They are the ones who brought us together and they are the ones who keep us returning to follow their story, safeguard their nest during the winter, and rejoice in our connections to nature, animals, and each other.
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