Magpie, Compton Park

Magpie, Compton Park

Magpie searching through tussocky grass in Compton Park, after things to eat.

Soft rush, Willow Pond

Soft rush, Willow Pond

Clump of soft rush growing near the edge of the water in Willow Pond in the Smestow Valley nature Reserve.

Soft rush, Willow Pond

Sparrows on the qv

Sparrows on the qv

House sparrows on the lookout, ready to dart out from their sheltered perches to grab a nibble to eat.

Common whitlowgrass by roadside, Seisdon

Common whitlowgrass by roadside, Seisdon

Common whitlowgrass in its final burst of flowering, by roadside edge of Seisdon green. Presumably some part of the tiny plant (possibly the seed casings) was thought to resemble whitlows – and hennce the plant perhaps was used as a folk remedy.

Carrion crow on lichen-encrusted branch, Bantock Park

Carrion crow on lichen-encrusted branch, Bantock Park

Carrion crow caught in bright sunlight as it stood on a heavily lichen-encrusted branch of a tree in Bantock Park. Its mate was also in the tree, obscured by branches.

Yellows: daffs, marsh marigolds, Bantock

Yellows: daffs, marsh marigolds, Bantock

The pond at Bantock Park, with yellow flowers of marsh marigolds at the water’s edge, and daffodils further onto dry land

Magpies on patrol, Bantock Park

Magpies on patrol, Bantock Park

Pair of magpies on the ground near the pond at Bantock Park, stalking round looking for things to eat.

Spring flowers: cherry and gorse

Spring flowers: gorse

Flowers from a front garden, overhanging a pavement. Here gorse and cherry.

Tightly clustered, glistening inkcaps

Tightly clustered, glistening inkcaps

More spring fungi are now starting to appear. Glistening inkcaps grow in tight clusters, often right at the base of tree stumps.

Wood anemones, Railway Walk

Wood anemones, Railway Walk

Plants of the woodland floor are getting their main growth in before leaves appear on the trees above, monopolising the sunlight. These wood anemones were flowering by the Railway Walk near Finchfield.

Wood anemones, Railway Walk

Just a quick sip: robin

Just a quick sip: robin

Robin carefully checking that everything is safe, then taking a quick sip of water from a bird bath.

They’re back: violets, Castlecroft

They're back: violets, Castlecroft

The bank by the side of Mop’s Farm bridge (over the canal, heading out into the countryside beyond Castlecroft) used to be covered in violets and lesser celandines growing wild in spring. Then the bank started to get heavy foot traffic being used as an unofficial link between the canal towpath and the bridleway across the bridge. For several years, celandine numbers plummeted, and the violets disappeared completely. Now, they’re back.

They're back: violets, Castlecroft