Wednesday, February 9, 2011
Red sky this morning, more snow, and Holly berries for the robins.
Elizabeth Lawrence called them "Yankee Robins". And they come by the millions in the winter, looking for open fields and lawns when their home grounds in the north are crusted with snow. A flock of at least one hundred have been here around my apartment this week. The builders landscaped with holly hedges, and by March these bushes will be picked clean since the snows are frequent and the worms have gone deep. I saw a flock of 2 dozen robins in a privet last week. The top branches were stripped of berries. Now there are none.
Privet, like the Japanese honeysuckle, has escaped from yards and gone wild. There are great stands of both in the Warner Parks. And despite the shovels and pruners of the volunteers who try to rid the parks of these "invasives", they multiply. Volunteers cannot fly, but the great tribes that live on these berries do. Hercules may have cleaned the Augean stables, but I do not think even he could clear the Warner Parks of honeysuckle and privet. The robins, Yankee or native, have nothing to fear.