Thursday, 3 April 2014

Back in Beds

I've been away from home a lot recently, so the total hasn't progressed very far since the last post, but with spring now in full flow hopefully the next few weeks should see me back on track. Before my travels there was time to snap a perennial garden favourite, the hairy footed flower bees. These solitary bees resemble small bumblebees living life on fast-forward, making it tricky to get a decent photo as they whizz from flower to flower. I've got a clump of lungwort (Pulmonaria) in the garden planted especially to attract them in, and sure enough, as soon as the weather got warm enough, the first buzzing blur appeared.

147: Hairy-footed Flower Bee (m)
A briefly still male Hairy-footed Flower Bee
Since then, the only action has been courtesy of the moth trap, with a couple of mild nights leading to some excellent catches for the time of year. New for the challenge were Red Chestnut, Powdered Quaker and a first for the garden Pine Beauty. I also briefly had an early thorn in the trap, but that gained the dubious distinction of being the first escapee of the year! Also drawn to the light was a slightly less attractive creature in the shape of the carrion beetle Nicrophorus humator. As well as not looking especially pretty, these large black beetles have a tendency to smell of the last animal they've been burrowing in, as well as being covered in orange mites. A very pale clouded drab briefly raised hopes of a first ever lead-coloured drab, but the hunt for that particular beast continues.

148: Pine Beauty
Pine Beauty
150: Red Chestnut
Red Chestnut
151: Powdered Quaker
Powdered Quaker
149: Nicrophorus humator
Nicrophorus humator and mites
Total: 151 Species - see all the photos here

Lifelist 1300 Species

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