"Did you hear the cranes?"
"Yes! I saw two of them in my yard last night!"
"A flock of them flew over earlier today."
"There's a momma moose and little one outside."
"I think that momma is pregnant and has been trying to run her young 'un away."
"Yeah, I've had one hanging out in my back yard this week."
"I've seen at least a couple moose every day this week!"
These are conversations of spring in Homer. There's some anticipation of the first cranes arriving and a buzz when they come in, advertising their presence with their echoing squanks overhead. Only in Homer is there a video of sandhill cranes in the pre-movie show.
The moose that have been hiding all winter have come out, munching on the fresh green grass that has been sprouting and sticking to the highly populated areas of town and protection from bear. Now the waiting game becomes watching to see when last year's babies are run off as the momma's anticipate their newborns and the breathless hope of seeing the little moose freshly born tottering around on their little stilted legs.
The sound of cranes and the sight of moose around town are unique signs of spring in Homer.