Though it may be difficult to believe, spring is well and truly on its way if Mother Nature is an accurate barometer.
Signs of spring have been recorded across the UK on the Woodland Trust’s Nature’s Calendar project.
So far in 2017 the conservation charity has already received sightings of 42 different indicators of spring at more than a thousand locations across the UK.
Recorders in Sussex have logged snowdrops, hazel catkins and even records of song thrush singing.
The Trust has received fewer records than this time last year which is explained by colder temperatures in January 2017 compared to 2016.
The recent weather may slow the advance of spring, but it causes less of a problem than a late cold spell, when many more species may be awake from hibernation or flowering – as happened in 2013.
Judith Garforth, Woodland Trust Citizen Science Officer, said: “Recording signs of the changing seasons on Nature’s Calendar is hugely valuable to scientists and researchers who monitor its impact on nature. Although we’re seeing signs slightly later this year we expect to see many more signs as it finally begins to warm up.”
By recording spring signs of species found in woodland and other habitats, thousands of people have enabled Nature’s Calendar to become a vital survey into how climate change is affecting UK plants and wildlife.
Find out more at naturescalendar.org.uk