Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Spring is arriving

Today was the perfect spring day. I arrived at about 12.30 and I was wandering around in a t-shirt. I had the emergency back-up of a jumper around my neck and a jacket arranged over my shoulder bag, but it was so warm that I didn't actually need either. I haven't felt so warm outdoors all year.

The park was very quiet. There was the usual assortment of women with pushchairs, men with small dogs and the odd jogger, but there weren't many other people around.

I haven't been in the parks for ages and it was great to go and stretch my legs and see what had changed. As everything was under snow the last time I was there quite a lot had changed!

Both the Russia Dock Woodland and Stave Hill Ecological Park looked very manicured.

I'll write about the Ecological Park in the next couple of days. In the Russia Dock Woodland there were patches of crocus and snowdrop. They were lovely. Daffodils still haven't come into flower but they should do in the next couple of weeks. The cherry laurel is in bud, and in the areas where it was seriously cut back it is making a radical come-back and the Red Nettle is widespread. The Yellow Flag, as usual at this time of year, is reviving and the bulrushes are fluffy, dispersing their seeds. Everything else has new buds and tiny green leaves. There is pussy willow and there are catkins.

There were several squirrels out and about.

There was a lot of bird song from the trees but the only ones I came face to face with were blackbirds, starlings, a magpie, lots of pigeons and two sparrows.

On the ponds there were mallards, moorhens, coots and, on Globe Pond, two Canada Geese.

On the insect front there was one gigantic and very cheesed off bumble bee, a ladybird on a dead oak leaf and a very surpising bright yellow brimstone butterly (which was just too far away to photograph).

Spring has certainly arrived, and not a moment too soon!

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