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BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring

Emma B 16 Feb 04 - 01:54 PM
Catherine Jayne 16 Feb 04 - 01:57 PM
GUEST 16 Feb 04 - 02:33 PM
Raptor 16 Feb 04 - 02:53 PM
Mr Red 16 Feb 04 - 03:00 PM
Jim Dixon 16 Feb 04 - 06:08 PM
Gareth 16 Feb 04 - 06:50 PM
The Fooles Troupe 16 Feb 04 - 06:54 PM
Emma B 16 Feb 04 - 07:02 PM
katlaughing 16 Feb 04 - 08:07 PM
The Shambles 17 Feb 04 - 01:56 AM
Liz the Squeak 17 Feb 04 - 04:22 AM
Auxiris 17 Feb 04 - 04:34 AM
The Shambles 17 Feb 04 - 05:53 AM
Raptor 17 Feb 04 - 06:55 AM
dianavan 17 Feb 04 - 10:15 AM
Dave Hanson 17 Feb 04 - 10:19 AM
ced2 17 Feb 04 - 10:38 AM
Dave Hanson 17 Feb 04 - 10:49 AM
The Shambles 17 Feb 04 - 11:43 AM
katlaughing 17 Feb 04 - 12:28 PM
GUEST 17 Feb 04 - 01:05 PM
Liz the Squeak 17 Feb 04 - 06:56 PM
pdq 17 Feb 04 - 07:33 PM
GUEST 17 Feb 04 - 07:42 PM
EBarnacle 18 Feb 04 - 08:45 AM
freda underhill 18 Feb 04 - 09:02 AM
The Shambles 18 Feb 04 - 09:18 AM
Auxiris 18 Feb 04 - 11:23 AM
Chief Chaos 18 Feb 04 - 02:15 PM
Liz the Squeak 18 Feb 04 - 07:20 PM
Emma B 18 Feb 04 - 07:27 PM
bbc 19 Feb 04 - 06:38 AM
Gervase 19 Feb 04 - 08:10 AM

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Subject: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: Emma B
Date: 16 Feb 04 - 01:54 PM

Today was such a beautiful sunny day that I took a walk along the Gallows clough, with its drifts of snowdrops, and into the forest along the old paths that haven't been tidied up for the tourists and where you have to duck, climb over fallen trees and jump across rivulets still swollen from the winter rain. Walking as far as the largest mere, which was teeming with water fowl, I didn't hear any cuckoos yet but I did see a couple of fat drowsy bumble bees and a butterfly tempted out, like myself, by the unexpected warmth.
2003 was such a personal "'orrible year" that it was wonderful to feel and see so much rebirth and new growth.
Wherever and whenever you are in the calender I wish you a day you would like to share too.


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: Catherine Jayne
Date: 16 Feb 04 - 01:57 PM

Thats beautiful Emma, I hope this year is a better year for you.

Bright Blessings for the year ahead
Khatt


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: GUEST
Date: 16 Feb 04 - 02:33 PM

We don't have cuckoos in my part of the world (Minnesota), but I have heard cardinals singing lately. The cardinals are way ahead of the season. There's still lots of snow on the ground and the temperatures are mostly below freezing, but the cardinals must have noticed that the days are getting longer, and are proceeding to stake out territory and attract mates. I also heard a woodpecker drumming the other day.


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: Raptor
Date: 16 Feb 04 - 02:53 PM

Guest Minnesota has both the Black-billed and the Yellow-billed Cockoos found in woodlands and along streams!

Emma thanks for shareing! Its nice to hear about someone having a good day!

Raptor


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: Mr Red
Date: 16 Feb 04 - 03:00 PM

Knock Knock

Who's there?

Cook ..................


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 16 Feb 04 - 06:08 PM

That was me who posted about the lack of cuckoos in Minnesota. Darn, Raptor, they must be rare. I've never seen or heard one, and I don't recall anyone ever mentioning them, either. They certainly wouldn't be thought of as a harbinger of spring here. The arrival of the first robins and the sound of their evening call, the bloom of the first dandelion, the swat of the first mosquito, the removal of the first woodtick -- these are all significant events, which people take note of every year. (And they seem far in the future now.)


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: Gareth
Date: 16 Feb 04 - 06:50 PM

Hmmm ! Leaving out the rather premature Dafodils, Crocuses, Snowdrops and other attractive Folowers I saw my first Dandelion (Weed) flowering in the lawn this afternoon. Arrrrgh !

Ah yes ! And the "Sunday Lunches" lambs are now playing o the meadows !

A most peculiar year climatically here in old South Wales.

Gareth


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 16 Feb 04 - 06:54 PM

How do you know if a Woodpecker is a Drummer?

By the drool...


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: Emma B
Date: 16 Feb 04 - 07:02 PM

thanks Mr Red and Foolestroupe for a laugh to end a lovely day


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: katlaughing
Date: 16 Feb 04 - 08:07 PM

Beautiful description, Emma, thank you.

The Canada geese spend part of the winter here. We've been hearing them a lot over the past few weeks. The other day whilst driving down a country road, with farms on either side, we glanced at a field of apparent stubble from last year's corn crop. Little hillocks dotted the entire expanse, lots of acreage. Suddenly, we noticed the humps were moving, they were Canada geese taking an afternoon nap in the high mountain desert air; some were fluffing their feathers, others hunkering down for a wee bit more rest.

Another day, we heard, first, then saw a huge flock overhead. I love that sound! Well, just like in Star Wars, one "rebel" group took off, just sort of rolled off in formation away from the others and went their own way. It was fun to watch. Looked as though they were headed for the Colorado River, while the others were going to a large reservoir. I could watch them and listen to them all the time.

We've also seen a woodpecker for the first time since moving here. Large, red-headed and loud; also most welcome.

kat


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: The Shambles
Date: 17 Feb 04 - 01:56 AM

Some early records from here on Portland Dorset.

The first Chiffchaff on 8th February and a Humming-Bird Hawkmoth on the 13th!


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 17 Feb 04 - 04:22 AM

We don't have cuckoos here in London, and I really miss the one that used to live in the woods to the south of my childhood home. I did hear the rev of the first scrambler though, as we were driving through bits of Essex last Sunday.

My garden has several different blooms at the moment, rosemary, crocus, a daffodil, verbena, polyanthus, purple primrose, violets, some hyacinths and the periwinkle. The bay tree is doing some strange things with berries and the pitosporum has huge buds on it.

The lawn has officially died. I will give it a decent funeral and plant shade loving stuff instead.

We do however have a huge amount of magpies vying for nest space. Limpit and I counted 15 in one place the other week, a group of 5 (for silver) and the rest in pairs (for joy) on the TV aerials down the terrace. Just down the street we found 5p.

LTS


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: Auxiris
Date: 17 Feb 04 - 04:34 AM

Those of us fortunate enough to expect hearing the cuckoos calling, either now or later on, should be keeping a few coins in our pockets. It's said that if you have coins in your pocket the first time you hear the cuckoo call, you'll have enough money all the year long. We're not likely to hear them here in France until about mid-April or so

No flowers in my garden here in Lorraine yet, but the crocuses are coming along now and my iris garden in central France is showing signs of a good bloom this year.

Here the magpies, crows and hawks are having their usual battles for nesting space and it looks as if the hawks will win it this year for a change!

Liz, have you tried planting some hostas in shady areas?

cheers,

Aux


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: The Shambles
Date: 17 Feb 04 - 05:53 AM

The following link is to a list of London's birds. Not only is the European Cuckoo on this list - but also the North Americam Yellow-Billed Cuckoo!

http://website.lineone.net/~andrewself/list.htm

Possibly it is not too easy to hear them above the roar of the traffic - but they are there. Perhaps even in Berkeley Square?


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: Raptor
Date: 17 Feb 04 - 06:55 AM

I've been a birder for many years. I'd love the bird on your side of the pond! Thanks for the link Shambles.

Raptor


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: dianavan
Date: 17 Feb 04 - 10:15 AM

I heard a cuckoo for the first time in S. France (Easter) early one morning. I awakened my daughter who insisted that it was coming from a clock in someone's home. Imagine our surprize when we discovered it was coming from the vineyard below! We both thought that cuckoos were only in clocks! Had no idea they were real! Lovely sound. Never did actually see it. Wish we had cuckoos here in B.C.

d


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: Dave Hanson
Date: 17 Feb 04 - 10:19 AM

The cuckoos round here just cough, and whats a ' cockoo ' raptor.
eric


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: ced2
Date: 17 Feb 04 - 10:38 AM

The first cuckoo of spring was on the telly yesterday it was called Oliver, it was cuckooing on about spending less money on the NHS and it the NHS would be better for it. Didn't his mates do this before and buggar-up the whole system... we'd have to be cuckoos to fall for it again!


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: Dave Hanson
Date: 17 Feb 04 - 10:49 AM

I always
thought ' Oliver ' was some sort of parrot until I discovered Smirnoff.
eric


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: The Shambles
Date: 17 Feb 04 - 11:43 AM

I always thought that to 'Letwin' was a kind of fart - or a release of hot air?

References to Oliver Letwin - the Tory Shadow chancellor


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: katlaughing
Date: 17 Feb 04 - 12:28 PM

You can listen to all kinds of bird songs at Birdwatchers Digest.

Here's the yellow billed cuckoo.

I miss the mockingbirds and cardinals out East, but love the meadowlarks here in the West.

kat


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: GUEST
Date: 17 Feb 04 - 01:05 PM

We don't have cockoos here but yesterday afternoon my flowering crab was full of hundred os cedar waxwings..it was a joy to see...spring must be on the way, although it is minus 19 today.


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 17 Feb 04 - 06:56 PM

Yes, I bought some hostas. The snails loved them.

I was given some more. The snails were still hungry.

I live in what appears to be the middle of the migratory trial of the large garden snail, just where it crosses the traditional mating grounds of the large green slug.

LTS


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: pdq
Date: 17 Feb 04 - 07:33 PM

As Gov. Arnold would say: "Hosta Lavista, Baby!"


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: GUEST
Date: 17 Feb 04 - 07:42 PM

LTS..........some snail/slug deterrents(Maybe.)

Put crushed eggeshells or holly bits around the hosta bases.

A plastic cup with a couple of inches of beer...for them to fall in and get too p****d to get out.

But saying that, if you live in southern UK like me, forget it. I gave up on hostas a couple of years ago due to our slimy friends. It's those photos in the catalogues that do the trouble, they look all glossy leaved and regal with their flowering spikes. And when we plant them they turn to lace doilies in a matter of nanoseconds.


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: EBarnacle
Date: 18 Feb 04 - 08:45 AM

Took a paddle last Thursday. Lots of Mergansers and Bufflehead along the inlet. Too many Canadas and Brant to count [most of them are resident population]. The resident Cardinals are still with us, ditto the local cuckoos and catbirds. Saw my first Baldy of the year yesterday over Croton Reservoir. On the trip north, saw my first Robin of the year. Spring is icumen in, lhud sing cuckoo.


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: freda underhill
Date: 18 Feb 04 - 09:02 AM

The title of this thread reminded me of the book, the "Silent Spring" published in 1962.


"Over increasingly large areas of the United States spring now comes unheralded by the return of birds, and the early mornings are strangely silent where once they were filled with the beauty of bird song." (from Silent Spring)

Rachel Carson received a letter from a friend in Massachusetts in the summer of 1957. Her friend wrote that an airplane hired by the state had flown back and forth over her two acres of woods, spraying DDT to control mosquitos. The next day, there were dead songbirds in her yard. She contacted Carson, a biologist and author working for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, to find out what could be done to stop another spraying. Carson looked into the problem and was shocked by how extensive the pesticide situation was. She decided to write about it and let people know.

DDT came into common use around 1939 (though invented in 1874), especially for insect control for the army during World War II.
Carson spent much of 1958 to 1962 researching and writing the book that would be Silent Spring. Carson explained in plain terms how the strongest bugs survive, making stronger pesticides necessary, and that DDT, though scarce in the water, becomes concentrated as it works its way up the food chain -- from plankton to fish to birds and so on. Her message that humans cannot totally control nature, or eradicate species we don't like -- at least not without harmful side effects‹came through clearly. She advocated integrated management: using a minimum of chemicals combined with biological and cultural controls.

One chemical company tried to stop publication of the book before it went to press, threatening a law suit over facts. The publisher went ahead. The company did not sue, and in fact was found later to be one of the worst offenders in using and producing toxic chemicals.

As Esquire magazine wrote, Silent Spring "made people think about the environment in a way they never had before. . . . Rachel Carson introduced to the general imagination the idea of ecology." Her book is often cited as the kick-off of the modern environmental movement. The year after its publication, President Kennedy set up an advisory committee on environmental matters. In 1969, Congress passed the National Environmental Policy Act and the National Cancer Institute announced its findings that DDT could produce cancer. By then, individual states had started to ban DDT use. In 1972, a federal ban was placed on the pesticide.

...just thinking of not hearing the first cuckoo.. from another angle..


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: The Shambles
Date: 18 Feb 04 - 09:18 AM

A very good point - we do owe her a great deal.

In the early 70s when I left this island - there had not been any breeding Pergrine Falcons here since the late 1950s - despite many suitable sites.

I am pleased to report that there are now 5 sites occupied by breeding pairs. This must be good news - only qualified by the fact that the breeding success of coastal pairs is not that high.

Silent Spring was written only just in time - but the threat continues.


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: Auxiris
Date: 18 Feb 04 - 11:23 AM

Liz, I am indeed sorry to hear of the sad fate of your hostas and should have known better than to suggest them. We have many problems over here with both slugs and snails and the only thing that really keeps them away at all are slug pellets.

Before the rest of you start to cry out in horror, please believe me when I say that I do use many other slug and snail deterrents, including beer, wood ashes and so on when possible, i.e. non-rainy periods and only use the pellets when I cannot do otherwise. Slugs and snails also enjoy munching on my tall bearded iris seedlings, which I cannot allow, as there is a 3-year wait from the moment that the initial cross is done to their first bloom.

Aux


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: Chief Chaos
Date: 18 Feb 04 - 02:15 PM

Sorry folks, they are all over here trying to explain why there were no weapons of mass destruction found and how their leader completed his obligations to the Nat'l Guard.


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 18 Feb 04 - 07:20 PM

I started growing ground ivies and periwinkles instead, slugs and snails don't seem to like them and they're just as pretty if not so regal as hostas.

LTS


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: Emma B
Date: 18 Feb 04 - 07:27 PM

The other sound of Spring that I expect soon is the annual pond (noisy) froggie gang bang but there's nothing like a group of active hungry frogs to keep the slug population down.


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: bbc
Date: 19 Feb 04 - 06:38 AM

This will be my 1st spring in my new house & location, so I don't know what to expect. A man who was recently working in my house, though, referred to it as "mud season." Hmmmm.....

bbc (on the NY border w/ CT & MA in the USA)


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Subject: RE: BS: Not hearing the first cuckoo of Spring
From: Gervase
Date: 19 Feb 04 - 08:10 AM

Spring is certainly crazy this year. Up in Snowdonia at the weekend, keen to try out new crampons, and I end up with a sun-tan. Driving back, the May was already out - so stripping off was sanctioned anyway - and snowdrops were everywhere.
BTW, Liz, to keep the snails off yer hostas, get hold of some copper tape. You can buy it from garden centres if Micca can't liberate some from work. Stuck around the edge of pots, it will deter any slug or snail - last year the hostas we 'taped' were the only ones not to look like lace by the end of the summer. Beer traps and eggshells have their advocates, I know, but I've never known anything work as well as copper tape.


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