Daily Archives: September 24, 2012

Spring Fever

I’m as restless as a willow in a windstorm,
I’m as jumpy as a puppet on a string,
I’d say that I had spring fever,
But I know it isn’t spring.
I’m as starry eyed and gravely discontented,
Like a nightingale without a song to sing.
Oh, why should I have spring fever,
When it isn’t even spring?
Richard Rodgers, Oscar Hammerstein II (1945)

Last year around this time I wrote about the arrival of the Godwits in the South Island – click here to read it again.

Godwits en route

They really do herald Spring in our part of the world.  And they are so predictable.  Each year after spending the summer in Alaska they spend the early autumn in in the mudflats there fattening up for the long flight south.  This in readiness for their long flight to New Zealand , a distance of approximately 11,000 kms.

U.S. Geological Survey Biologist Bob Gill has been following these tiny birds and noting their habits for several years and he poses the question how, while weighing less than 500 grams (approx 1lb) can these tiny birds store enough fuel to fly non stop over these vast distances.

So with the profusion of tulips at the Botanic Gardens yesterday, the Godwits and clocks being moved forward for Daylight Saving on Sunday we can really say that Spring is here.

“It’s spring fever.  That is what the name of it is.  And when you’ve got it, you want – oh, you don’t quite know what it is you do want, but it just fairly makes your heart ache, you want it so!  ”
Mark Twain