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Ten signs of spring in Britain’s countryside
By Helen Pentith  //  Tue 7th February 2017
Spring flowers

As the days begin to lengthen, it’s time to start looking forward to spring once more! At Escrick Park, we’re already on the look out for those classic signs of spring. The estate is situated in a large area of Yorkshire’s finest countryside, with woodland, wildflower meadows and even a nature reserve right on our doorstep. Many residents of the Hollicarrs, the estate’s holiday lodges, keep coming back to Escrick Park because of the wide variety of wildlife they’re able to see from their lodges throughout the year. Signs of spring aren’t just satisfying for wildlife lovers to spot – everyone is pleased to see these welcome harbingers of spring…


#1: Snowdrops

Snowdrops are a stunning sight in late winter, and make common subjects for photographers – particularly when set against a snowy backdrop. These little flowers may not signal the start of spring, but they’re a heartening reminder that winter doesn’t last forever!


#2: Frogspawn

A new turn of the frog’s life cycle is another sure sign that spring is imminent. While nearer the towns and cities you might only spot squashed frogs on the roads, on the Escrick Park Estate you’re sure to see plenty of healthy frogspawn in ponds, streams, and ditches.


#3: Birdsong

You’ll hear snatches of occasional birdsong throughout winter, particularly on milder days, but it is in early spring where birdsong begins to fill the air once more. As migrating birds return to our shores and the breeding season begins, we all enjoy the wonders of birdsong.


#4: Spring grazing

When spring is underway, the cows return to the fields to feed on fresh grass. Beef herds and dairy herds that have had to spend the winter inside finally get to spend more time in the open fields.


#5: Nest building

If you keep a close eye out, you might spot birds carrying materials to their new nests in spring.


#6: Daffodils

We all love daffodils! These cheery, colourful flowers tend to flower from February onwards, and they’re certainly signs that the weather is getting less wintery.


#7: Bumblebees

Queen bumblebees first venture out in early March, although during mild winters they’ve been spotted as early as January. Warmer conditions rouse the queens from hibernation, and they set about rebuilding their reserves and finding suitable new nest sites.


#8: Bluebells

Bluebells don’t tend to flower until April or May, but they’re certainly worth waiting for. The sight of a woodland floor covered in bluebells is often breath-taking.


#9: Lambing

The start of the lambing season varies based on many factors – including the farm’s location and the breed of sheep – but the sight of newborn lambs gambolling around the countryside is something we all associate with spring.


#10: Blossom

Blossom transforms bare tree branches into bursts of colour. The beauty of cherry blossom, apple blossom and the many other varieties is partly in their fleeting nature. A tree may blossom for only a couple of weeks.


Want to spot some of these seasonal signs? Head to Skipwith Common and keep your eyes peeled!


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Country Land & Business Association Winners of The Bledisloe Gold Medal
RICS Award for Building Conservation David Bellamy Gold National Training Award
Members of the BH&HPA Visit Britain 5 star Award for exceptional park National Landlords Association
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