Crocuses

Crocuses

Not really wild, but these crocuses growing on a verge are a beautiful sign that better weather should soon be with us.

Crocus

Ivy fruit

Ivy fruit

Ivy fruit looking purple in bright, early spring sunshine. More often the fruit look black.

Dead oak

Dead oak

An old, dead oak stands stark even when compared to the denuded but living trees behind it.

Snowdrops

Snowdrops

A patch of snowdrops growing by one of the canals. Below is a closer view of another clump which was growing by the towpath.

Snowdrops

Magpie’s nest

Magpie's nest

Like a squirrel’s dray, this looks like an untidy pile of twigs high in the branches. It appears to be about the same size as well, but can be distinguished by being roughly spherical.

Robin singing

Robin singing

Another sign of the approaching spring: robins are increasingly visible singing from prominent lookouts, and so determined that they stay in place unless approached very closely.

Oak buds

Oak buds

Despite the continuing wintry weather, signs of spring are slowly coming. More and more trees are coming into bud, like this oak.

Footprints in the snow

Fox footprint

The recent snowfall saw more animal prints left in the snow early in the morning. Above the footprint of a fox, and below a set of its prints.

Fox footprints

And here are tracks left by a rabbit which crossed a quiet suburban street.

Rabbit footprints

For scale, here are the tracks next to the mark left by the tyre of a parking car.

Rabbit footprints

Hazel catkins

Hazel catkins

Here are the greenish (male) catkins of a standard hazel bush.

And here the pinkish catkins of the variant type.

Hazel catkins

And here the much less conspicuous female parts.

Female flowers, hazel