I managed to pick up a few more birds on my trip North - a Common Redpoll in Maine, a Common Raven and a Common Goldeneye in Vermont. Coincidentally, they were all "common". But now I'm back in North Carolina, where spring has begun to finally show itself.
The first bird I saw today was a first-of-year Barn Swallow off US-64, as I flew by at 75 mph. I decided to take advantage of the great weather once I got home, and convinced my parents to go to Bass Lake with me. I was surprised at what I found there. The first example of new arrivals was a small flock of Blue-gray Gnatcatchers. My dad spotted (and I ID'd) a Northern Parula singing from a small tree, giving me some of the best views of this energetic migrant I've had. A big surprise was my first Common Raven I've seen in Wake County (ever). It flew overhead soaring on massive wings, then landed in a distant tree. Ravens typically don't stray into central NC, instead they prefer to stick to the mountains.
Today was a sign of things to come - more migrants, warmer weather, and interesting bird activity. Though I'm not exactly looking forward to 95 degree days later this year, I am anxious for Spring Migration to come into full swing.