Discover Primary Science and Maths

Spotters Guides

Return to Greenwave

Frog

Finding frogspawn in a pond or ditch is one of the very early signs of spring and it can happen as early as February.

Frogs wake up from hibernation when spring comes and the first thing they do is go to the pond or ditch where they were born themselves to produce frogspawn.

Learn More
Download PDF (English)
Download PDF (Irish)

Primrose

Primroses grow wild in ditches, hedges, grassy banks and woodland edges.

From as early as February check hedges and banks, particularly south facing ones for primrose leaves. When you find them watch every day for the flowers to start growing.

Learn More
Download PDF (English)
Download PDF (Irish)

Horse Chestnut

To find a Horse Chestnut, ask the students if they remember where they collected conkers last autumn.

Every day during March you should examine the buds of your chosen horse chestnut.

Learn More
Download PDF (English)
Download PDF (Irish)

Swallow

The swallow feeds on insects, which it catches in its beak as it flies through the air. There are no insects in the air here in winter so the swallow flies off to warmer countries in Africa where there are plenty. But summer days are longer in Ireland than they are in Africa, so the swallows return here to breed. They need the longer days to have enough time to collect flying insects to feed their young.

Learn More
Download PDF (English)
Download PDF (Irish)

Hawthorn

Many of the hedges surrounding our fields and roadsides contain hawthorn trees.

Individual hawthorn trees are also common. Examine nearby hedges for trees and bushes with thorns on the twigs from the end of March.

Learn More
Download PDF (English)
Download PDF (Irish)

Ash

Ash trees are very common in hedges, parks and gardens. It is usually well into May before the ash buds burst.

They have grey twigs with black buds - the only Irish tree to have black buds.

Learn More
Download PDF (English)
Download PDF (Irish)