I haven't really been out birding at all recently, but I have noted a few signs of spring recently, just from being out and about. On Saturday morning, a Cooper's Hawk flew into my yard, announcing its presence by calling vociferously. Oddly, a nearby Tufted Titmouse seemed totally unfazed by the hawk's presence, continuing to sing the entire time it was there. Yesterday, somewhere between the Dog Team Tavern and Charlotte, there was a single Turkey Vulture trying to gain elevation along Rt. 7. And, as I stepped out of the car upon arriving home, a noisy flock of about 50 Snow Geese flew overhead.
Regarding the possibility of an early Rose-breasted Grosbeak here in Vermont, I'm wondering if a female Purple Finch has been considered? The females of the two species are fairly similar looking, and now is about the time when Purple Finches start to migrate. A female Purple Finch would be much more likely than a Rose-breasted Grosbeak at this time of year, and much, much more likely than a Black-headed Grosbeak at any time of year.