When spring finally arrives, the British countryside wakes up and is suddenly awash with a beautiful array of birds, animals and plants.
It’s also the time of year when many animals give birth, meaning keen-eyed nature-lovers might be lucky enough to spot adorable newborns like this baby badger.
Part of Leeds City Museum’s new For All Season exhibition which examines the influence of the changing seasons, the badger is one of a number of animals on display alongside works of art and vintage fashion.
One of the most recognisable British mammals, female badgers give birth to litters of up to five cubs, keeping the vulnerable babies warm and safe in nests within the sett- a large system of burrows and chambers where badgers live in groups.
The mother badger feeds her young with her milk until they are ready to leave, but must eat lots of food to produce enough milk to keep their cubs fit and alive.
Ruth Martin, Leeds City Museum’s curator of exhibitions, said: “The animals we have on display as part of For All Seasons help to illustrate the varied and all-encompassing impact the changing seasons have on the natural world.
“Annual patterns in the weather determine everything from how and when animals breed to how they live and how they feed, so we have the British weather to thank for having such a diverse and beautiful array of wildlife all around us.”
For All Seasons, which is free to enter, can currently be found in Leeds City Museum’s special exhibitions gallery.
Objects on display illustrate spring, summer, autumn and winter alongside imaginative centrepieces including a giant sandcastle, indoor tree, traditional sledge and hook-a-duck pond.
Paintings by world-famous Leeds artist John Atkinson Grimshaw are also on display and the exhibition is accompanied by specially-recorded classical piano sheet music from the museum’s collection.
Councillor Brian Selby, Leeds City Council’s lead member for museums and galleries, said:
“I’m sure visitors and families will have a lot of fun exploring the many features that make spring, summer, autumn and winter so unique and learning how they come together to shape our year.”
For All Seasons runs until August 28. For more details about the exhibition and the programme of activities, please visit: http://www.leeds.gov.uk/museumsandgalleries/Pages/Seasons.aspx