We started along the shoreline, then moved up into the sugar bush. The corn snow creates interesting patterns and shadows.
A swift melt and hot spring might make people happy, but it's bad news for the forest. This slower, more deliberate melt, is healthier. Although, now we are almost into April, it really is time for Winter to get the memo: It's Over.
Taffy was intrigued to find a deer trail packed through the snow. Like ourselves, deer tend to follow the same tracks, turning them into little super-highways in the woods. Rabbits, mice and squirrels all do this as well, but their tracks are not quite as readily apparent as these. As the snow thins, the deer are more able to leave these trails and spread out in the woods -- where they will devour any bud and twig they can reach. This is a hungry season for the deer: as the snow lowers, the browse line gets higher, and out of reach for many of the smaller deer. People who have been putting out corn and alfalfa during the winter will have helped drive up the deer's metabolism to the point that they need more food than Nature can provide. It's not uncommon in April to find deer that have starved to death. Often peoples' well-meaning efforts feeding wildlife backfire big time.
We finished up by crossing the road into the back fields, which were brilliant in the sunshine. I thought Taffy had big feet... Wolf tracks are bigger! Fox tracks are smaller. They were all on display. It never gets old, walking in the woods, checking out the wild neighbourhood, watching the seasons change.
Come on up. We'll be happy to take you for a prowl in our 600 acres.