While most summer songbirds won't arrive until April, some of our permanent and winter residents are often best observed during March, when they are most likely to turn up in our residential areas. Restless due to the approach of their migration and/or mating season, these birds begin to roam about, leaving their more secluded and less developed winter haunts.
In my experience, permanent residents such as hairy woodpeckers, eastern bluebirds, northern mockingbirds and barred owls are more often seen in suburban areas during this month than at other times of the year. So too are winter residents such as white-crowned sparrows, fox sparrows, purple finches and yellow-bellied sapsuckers.
Perhaps this observation is purely an illusion, the product of my increasing attention to our yard and its inhabitants during the milder days of late winter. But I suspect that birds, like us, are energized by the lengthening daylight of March and I know that we, like them, become restless with the growing promise of spring.