It's more or less encouraging that the birds are coming back. It makes the possibility of an actual spring somewhere down the line seem realistic. It's not as if they all left forever, because the sparrows have been around all winter, but the trees are starting to come back to life already, and here come the bigger birds.
Just this afternoon I watched a pair of mourning doves frolicking on the bare walnut tree. The walnut is not back to life yet, but the doves didn't mind. Any bird that can mourn and frolic at the same time has my full support. I watched them between doing cost reports and the many other fanciful ways I spend my time on a Monday.
Later, big as all outdoors, a scrub jay was hopping on my porch bench, just as sprightly as if it had a bunch of other birds to bully. That's the main thing I've noticed about the jays, is that they want to be the boss of the yard. If a smaller bird (or even a larger one) is feeding on the ground, the scrub jay will bark at it from a branch and then try to move in on its territory. It'll even do that to another jay, no love lost.
Late this afternoon I saw something large and brownish streaking across the back yard. I sprang from my chair and peered through the blinds, seeing nothing out of place until my eyes focused on a lone turkey meandering toward the far trees. I haven't had any turkeys in the yard since early fall, and I never see one turkey without others being somewhere nearby. They're like ants in that way.
Still, there was no sign of any other turkeys until I looked at the small clearing under the grove of trees far off to the south. There they were, a whole flock of them, shuffling willy-nilly in all directions, until suddenly they all at once took a notion to head toward the east and disappeared below the trees.
No quail today, but they'll come back. They always do.