I saw my first migratory Eastern Phoebe of the year today in the same place as last year – Rockaway Community Park in southern Queens – and a day earlier than last year, but still later than usual for me. For me, this means that spring has arrived! (The actual bird is the one in all three images.)

As I have for the last several years, I will now ask the same question of midwesterners and northeasterners that I ask every year: When did you see your first Eastern Phoebe of 2014? And was it late or early?

Eastern Phoebe reflection

Puddle, puddle, on the ground, who’s the fairest phoebe around?

This is a bit late for me but not by too much. My average over the last ten years is now 21 March and it would be much later if not for the early bird I found in 2006 on 03 March. If you are interested, here are the dates of my first phoebe from each of the last ten years.

2015 – 28 March

2014 – 29 March

2013 – 24 March

2012 – 15 March

2011 – 19 March

2010 – 31 March

2009 – 15 March

2008 – 21 March

2007 – 26 March

2006 – 03 March

Eastern Phoebe face-on

Great, I’m your first phoebe of 2015. Now find me some bugs and turn off the cold!

Written by Corey
Corey is a New Yorker who lived most of his life in upstate New York but has lived in Queens since 2008. He's only been birding since 2005 but has garnered a respectable life list by birding whenever he wasn't working as a union representative or spending time with his family. He lives in Forest Hills with Daisy and Desmond Shearwater. His bird photographs have appeared on the Today Show, in Birding, Living Bird Magazine, Bird Watcher's Digest, and many other fine publications. He is also the author of the American Birding Association Field Guide to the Birds of New York.