We have been graced with 40 degree temperatures the last few days and this has made a soggy, soupy dent in the blanket of snow and ice. There's still a lot of it and as it melts, the oak leaves and various animal tracks are exposed.
The deer use our backyard as a highway. They cut through in a perfectly straight line, right through the middle.
The rabbits are not as exacting, but we have hawks in the tree-tops so they have reason to take heed, lest they end up as some one's lunch. Their tracks weave around the yard like drunken tourists at the beach- under the deck, over to the pine tree, by the water and back. Before the snow started to melt, the rabbits had blazed a trail right along the back of the house, up on to the deck, down the side and into a hole underneath the bushes by the windows. Sometimes the rabbits and the deer come right up within a few feet of the windows and look inside at us. We're like the gorilla exhibit at the zoo- except we don't have tires laying around and we don't throw ourselves at the glass to scare our observers.
With the melt, the tracks elongate and it looks like we've had beagle-sized rabbits circling the house for weeks. A forty pound rabbit shouldn't be afraid of the hawks, but is large enough to bring in the newspaper. I'll have to leave them a note on the glass.