I spent this beautifully bright and warm spring day clipping and raking the meadow. There are now plenty of dried stalks, seed heads, straw and leaf litter to add to the “lumber yard” for wildlife. The birds sing incessantly. A little flock of goldfinches has been visiting the feeders in recent weeks, their plumage all shades of muted yellow and olive. I hear their reedy song while I work. But this morning a neighbor’s incessantly droning leaf blower, that I had to put up with for well over an hour, drowns out the sweet sounds of spring. I disturb a bee with my rake and I gingerly replace the leaf litter. I wonder how many bees and other critters are being more rudely and inadvertently driven out from their winter hiding by the gas-guzzling machine over the road from me. I rake and clear just enough so as not to smother and destroy emerging fauna and plants. The Nest Depot at the back edge of my property is now overstocked with building material and organic matter left in place feeds the soil.