Zipping around the flowers, rarely staying still for more than a second at a time, they're not the easiest of creatures to photograph and I've had many frustrating sessions resulting in a mass of shots of orange blurs. This year I resumed combat, and after a complete failure on Sunday, I finally managed some half-decent shots of a male this morning (perhaps the cooler conditions slowed him down a bit).
I'd like to get some better, and especially some non-flashed pictures, so the battle will continue for the next few weeks while these wonderful little bees are on the wing.
The warmth also signified the start of the proper mothing season, and for the first time this year I put out the trap with real expectations of a decent haul. Two hours later and I went for a quick inspection and saw what looked like a quaker buzzing up against the fence. I potted it, idly hoping for the first twin-spotted quaker of the year, and was astonished when I held the pot up to the light to reveal a pristine Dotted Chestnut.
This is a very rare moth in Bedfordshire, with around 10 records up to this year, and one I'd never seen before, so I was very excited. It subsequently turned out that three other Dotties were caught in Bedfordshire last night, so it seems they're becoming less rare. Other good moths were the first Early Thorn, Small Quaker and Grey Shoulder-knot of the year, and a garden first, if somewhat tatty, Engrailed. Another good find was the snail eating beetle Silpha atrata, which might explain the lack of snails this year!