Partridge chicks delight visitors

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As the sound of newly hatched chicks heralds spring’s arrival visitors to Leeds City Museum can learn more about the season.

The advent of spring is traditionally the time when eggs, which have been carefully nurtured and protected by mothers, begin to hatch and newborns like these grey partridges tentatively make their way into the world.

These particular preserved chicks are on display at Leeds City Museum as part of the For All Seasons exhibition, which explores the myriad of effects the changing seasons have on the world.

Alongside other baby animals, the partridge chicks are used to illustrate spring and its pivotal role in the life cycle of most of our wildlife.

Female grey partridges lay large clutches of eggs, with young birds feeding on small insects, making it harder for them to survive in areas where pesticides are used.

Ruth Martin, Leeds City Museum’s curator of exhibitions, said: “We often associate the arrival of spring with new life and that’s certainly true for a lot of animals in Britain. But spring can also be a tough time for newborn animals and their parents when the race for food and survival is at its most critical.

“The changing seasons are probably the most powerful influence on the natural world and dictate what plants, birds and animals we see around us every day.”

For All Seasons, which is free to enter and runs until August 28, features various objects to illustrate spring, summer, autumn and winter including 100 year-old decorative Easter eggs, delicate ceramics and historic seasonal fashions, as well as paintings by Leeds artist John Atkinson Grimshaw. For more details visit: http://www.leeds.gov.uk/museumsandgalleries/Pages/Seasons.aspx.

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