PURPLE FINCHES at the milk jug feeder. JUNCO around the yard and in the lilacs. RED OSIER is the color of the lipstick I used to think was attractive when I was a teeny bopper back in the 1950s — brazen red.

We went to the SOUTH HERO RAILROAD FILL today. To get there we turned left on South Street in South Hero and right on Martin Road (dirt). We saw a HUGE FLOCK OF CANVASBACKS in the open water between the Colchester and South Hero railroad fills. A few GOLDENEYES too. They whistle with their wings when they take off, a high-pitched, wavering whistle. We watched a group of them going through their mating antics — male twists his head back and grasps his tail. We also saw 1 MERGANSER (flying), 3 BUFFLEHEADS, and a pair of BALDPATES. Bob says the split-rail fences on the Champlain Islands are made of WHITE CEDAR.