The sound always puts a smile on my face. Partly because the faint hoop, hoop, hoop is quite a silly call. The other reason is the song of the perky-headed little hoopoe bird signifies spring is fast approaching.
On an island where temperatures stay skin friendly all year round, looking forward to spring might seem a bit strange. But temperatures do dip in winter here and the weather can get lively as the change of season approaches. Even though winter on Tenerife is mild to the point that some places would be glad to have it as a summer, there’s something uplifting about the advent of spring; the rebirth of the land as though the appearance of wild flowers unfurling towards the sun is nature’s way of stretching happily at the dawn of a brand new day.
As well as the singing hoopoe, we’re greeted by perfume every time we leave the house. The most expensive bottled scents couldn’t match the sublime fragrance that jasmine sends dancing through the air.
Even driving through an affluent housing development, a shortcut to the supermarket, takes us past a couple of proud white spikes standing out from the floral crowd – bugloss. It’s not as flamboyant as its striking red relation which will make the surreal volcanic plains of Teide National Park even more alien in May, but the white tajinaste is an eye-catcher nonetheless.
Along the same roads, tulip trees have burst into colour, their red bell flowers doubling as drinking fountains for the local birdlife.
The main plaza in Icod de los Vinos and the bamboo tunnel in Parque Garcia Sanabria in Santa Cruz will be carpeted by delicate lilac petals as one of the prettiest trees on the island, the jacaranda blooms before scattering its confetti-like gifts. In roadside verges and fields around Santiago del Teide wild corn poppies will add their perky prettiness to the rural scenery.
Whilst no effort is needed to see roadside displays, the most stunning of the spring floral shows requires a bit of a trek deep into the Teno Mountains to witness westerly facing slopes bedecked by the most exquisite flower carpets framed by a sparkling sea.
Spring is almost upon us and with it we enter the most beautiful period of year on Tenerife.
That’s the main reason the hoop, hoop, hoop makes me smile.
Jack is co-editor, writer and photographer for BuzzTrips and the Real Tenerife series of travel websites as well as a contributor to online travel sites and travel magazines. Follow Jack on Google+