In April the rural fields of northern Ritto City near Yasugawa (野洲川) come alive with agricultural activity, and many flowers and insects appear. This year, 2020, the threat of the new type of coronavirus (COVID-19) has greatly reduced human activity. Japan is in a nationwide state of emergency from April 16th through May 6th, but rural life goes on and nature is taking its course as usual.
March 6-20 is Keichitsu (啓蟄) – Insects awaken – in the traditional 24-season Japanese calendar. March 11-15, the middle of its three micro-seasons, is Momo hajimete saku (桃始笑), when peach blossoms begin to bloom. I photographed some flowers on three of the five days of Momo hajimete saku.
Photographs of birds and flowers that I took February 11-13, during Kōō kenkan su (黄鶯睍睆), the middle of Risshun (立春), which is the beginning of spring in the traditional Japanese calendar of of 24 seasons.
Late January, from the 25th to the 29th, is the middle of the traditional Japanese cold season, Daikan (大寒), or Big Cold. This year, 2020, has been quite warm and often gloomy, with heavy clouds and light rain.
I was able to get outdoors only a few days in mid-January. Fortunately, I was able to take a few photos in the last days of the traditional season, 小寒 Shōkan (Lesser cold), and the first first week of 大寒 Daikan (Greater cold).