In WalksNature

There’s always plenty to see in the British countryside, but this time of year can be particularly exciting. In this article, Kathryn Eccles from country store Millbry Hill offers her tips for what to spot on your travels this spring.

A recent study has revealed that a walk in the countryside is the number one activity Brits do to unwind (Country Living). And, now that warmer weather is supposed to be on its way, I’m sure many more of us will be dusting off our boots and jackets to head out even more regularly.

In spring, many aspects of the natural world are waking up, making it one of the best times to go rambling in the country. Below, I’ll share four elements of nature you can look out for this spring to get the most of this inspiring season.

Flowers

In early spring, when it’s still a bit frosty, little pops of colour from the first few flowers of the year begin to crop up. Snowdrops can pepper the ground from as early as January, but from the end of February onwards, daffodils, primroses and violets should start to appear in the wild, and colourful tulips will start shooting up in gardens. Then, April should bring about carpets of wild garlic and bluebells to add even more variety to your woodland walks.

Trees

After all those bare branches in winter, blossom can be a very welcome sight, whether it is soft white, cream, pale pink, or fuchsia. Not all trees blossom, but those that bear fruits like apples, plums, and cherries do, so a trip to an orchard will reap the best rewards. Various other little buds will start to grow on trees in forests and woodlands, adding more colours and signalling the start of warmer seasons.

Birds

Migratory birds that left us for warmer climates in the winter will start to come back to the UK at this time of year to breed. Many come later, but spring is the perfect time to look out for the distinctive wishbone shaped tail of a swallow or listen for the call of a cuckoo when you’re out and about in the country. From March to July, you’ll get to witness the majestic Dawn Chorus if you happen to be up before sunrise.

Wildlife

Hibernating animals start waking up at this time of year, which means we’ll start to see old friends like hedgehogs again. But even non-hibernating animals become more visible during spring, too. Most baby badgers are born in February, so if you are very lucky (and quiet!) you might spot some cubs, and in March it’s hare breeding season so you should see plenty of ‘mad’ activity from those, too.

There’s plenty of natural phenomena to see in the country this spring. Bear these points in mind the next time you head outdoors, and you’ll know exactly what to look out for.

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