Some spring birds are here, prompting questions

It really wasn’t much of a winter on Block Island — or hasn’t been so far — which prompted recent postings on social media about the appearance of birds that usually arrive in the spring. Was this the effect of global warming? Was it in fact not really an anomaly at all?
The Block Island Times decided to turn to our local naturalist, Kim Gaffett, to find out what is happening.
“It’s been a warm winter… birds may be calling,” she said, but the warm weather may also mean that “people may be outside more” and hearing birds they might not normally hear if they were cooped up inside.
It was the appearance of the red winged-blackbirds that caught some people’s attention. Gaffett said she heard one on Feb. 8. “On a sunny day, you can hear them,” but she added, “I don’t think the red-winged black birds are here early.”
Bird species common to the island year-round include robins, Carolina wrens, song sparrows, and chickadees, just to name a few.
The warmer air “is triggering them to be more active and to start their territorial

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