Common frogs begin to lay frogspawn by Richard Burkmarr 1/3
Bitterns begin to boom by Brian Macfarlane 2/3
Robin singing by Zoe Shreeve 3/3

Spring: Bure Valley

Spring in the Bure Valley, and the woods and reedbeds are filled with birdsong. In late March chiffchaffs – the first of the migrant warblers to return from Africa – arrive back, announcing their presence with their stop-start song. The dawn chorus, led by our own robins, song thrushes and blackbirds, makes its presence felt.
 
Primroses peak out from the woodland floor, a yellow splash of sunshine that hints of the summer to come. Soon the scratchy warble of the blackcap will sound, usually out of sight, deep in the tangle of bushes and scrub.
Into April and May, and sedge and reed warblers give their staccato churrs from the reedbeds, while willow warblers slur their distinctive down-sliding song from the tops of trees.
 
Clumps of frogspawn fill the dykes, as pond skaters and other invertebrates dance on the slow-moving waters. If you’re very lucky, the strange booming call of the bittern can be heard, somewhere off in the distant reeds.
 
Early butterflies, like lemon-yellow brimstones and exquisite orange-tips, are on the wing, and many other insects are starting to emerge. Wildflowers are beginning to bloom, the trees coming into leaf.
 
Summer is on the way.