We have rain forecast for the next few days, so I took the opportunity to see what signs of spring I could find.
7-Spot Ladybirds hibernate as adults, so in theory they can be seen at any month of the year if the weather is warm enough. But I like to think that the first sighting of the year is a sign of things to come:
|7 Spot Ladybird|
|Barren Strawberry flower bud|
Bush Vetch is also pushing through the dead fronds of last year's Male Fern:
|Slender St. John's Wort|
I cropped this shot of Opposite-leaved Golden Saxifrage to show the rear wall of the ditch covered in liverworts and mosses:
|Opposite-leaved Golden Saxifrage with liverworts and mosses|
A few years ago, one of the few local areas to have wild Reedmace was excavated to see if it would be suitable for building a house (it isn't!). Most of the Reedmace disappeared, but some has now made a recovery:
|Reedmace - Typha latifolia|
No time is ever wasted in nature: the leaves of Lesser Celandine are hardly full-grown and already the fungal rust Puccinia ranunculi has taken hold.
|Puccinia ranunculi on Lesser Celandine|
Last year there seemed to be a very wide-ranging absence of fresh mines of the micromoth Stigmella aurella from its main foodplant, Bramble, and I certainly found very few. So it's good to see a good number of fresh mines (fresh mines are white, whereas old mines from previous years are brown) on the host plant this year:
|Mines of the micromoth Stigmella aurella|