Nature is not cruel. It is just nature.
Apparently, a rabbit became a meal right under one of the bird feeders. Besides the trampled, blood-stained snow, there were tufts of fur all about. I'm not a naturalist, but I wonder if the snow cover is helping the predators spot prey this winter. That might also explain the dearth of squirrels at the feeders. It seems like there are fewer birds as well.
While we usually get some snow every year, it ordinarily does not stick around. At least the snow cover keeps me from getting too anxious to start gardening, despite the arrival of seeds, seeds, and more seeds.
I forgot to mention that, when I repotted the chives, I got to use my new root knife from Lee Valley. Nice tool! I am looking forward to dividing hostas with it this spring.