Friday, 23 May 2008
Thursday, 22 May 2008
About 10 minutes later they flew off, still clasped together to the pond. There were three pairs laying eggs in the pond and several single damselflies.
In the evening, while I was watering he garden, I noticed a goldfinch singing from TV ariel across the road. It would fly off to the tree behind our house and back again. There was a quick squabbling with another goldfinch.
This morning the goldfinch was singing from the same tv ariel. As I walked our daughter to school I noticed both great tits and at least one coal tit in the trees outside the local school. As we reached Easthill we saw a thrush with nestingmaterials in its beak fly over the wall and into the walled garden. I had a look on the way back. I did not see the thrush but there was a beautiful robin singing. A warbler of some kind was singing from a high branch but I could not tell what speies because of the angle.
Back home and the goldfinch was singing from another tv ariel alternating with tree top end of garden. I went up stairs and got a clear view from the loft window. (The goldfinch was not visible from the ground).
This evening I noticed a baby grasshopper on the lawn out the back
Sunday, 18 May 2008
Wednesday, 14 May 2008
It was a day of rescuing as I had to rescue two separate damselflies from our conservatory. Once hey enetered itsreally hardto get them out again. With these two I resorted to carefully catching them in my hands and releasing them outside.
For the second day in a row, a carrion crow brought dried bread and put it in the bird bath and then flew away. About 5 minutes later the crow would eturn to feed on the bread which was now very soft. The crow appears to be nesting about 2 hundred memtres away in trees on the other side of the valled road.
Sunday, 11 May 2008
Damselflies continue to emerge from larvae. Three pairs seen laying eggs. While gardening I noticed a clump of newly hatched spiderlings. White on hatching they soon take on a rather atttracting golden colour. I took a rest on the doorstep and a male sparrow came to the bird bath to drink, a few feet from where I was sitting.
Still numerous bees around the gardens and holly blue butterflies visible for much of the day. Still numerous goldfinch coming and going via the large tree that overhangs our back garden.
Thursday, 8 May 2008
I also saw two bee flies, flicking their eggs (pic bee fly resting below) and a small wasp but it did not stay still enough to be identified.
Back home, it was cooler in afternoon. Worked on the table in garden underneath the awning. A goldfinch perched on a branch behind me calling to another goldfinch not far away.
Wednesday, 7 May 2008
On the way down the road to the shops I noticed a dead peacock butterfly on pavement
Tuesday, 6 May 2008
A small flock of chattering female sparrows foraged on the roof. One of them hovered momentarily and it checked along the edge of he roof looking for insects.
I have often seen them performing a similar behaviour to check for insects underneath the over hang of the garden wall. Several small moths flying in the front garden. I managed to get a close look at one which I think is Pyrausta purpuralis. This species flies both during the day and at night, and is distributed throughout much of Britain. It prefers dry grassland and chalky downland habitats. We live only a few minutes from the edge of the South Downs.
In this hot weather the coservatory door is almost constantly open. Unfortunately all manner on flying insects, in particlular bees, bumblebee and wasp. The solitary and honey bees seem to have the most problem finding their way out again so I now have ajam jar by the door to catch them and let them go outside. If not they tend to hide byehind the curtan unoticed and die.
Monday, 5 May 2008
The adult damselfly was still quite pale, creamy looking, following hatching. The damselflyhad very good eyesight, and reacted to my presence by hiding behind the leaf, even though I was several feet away. I accidentaly disturbed another damselfly, which promptly flew upinto the air. The remains of its larval form was also visible on a nearby plant. I kept an eye on the damselfly during the morning. Throughout the morning it slowly became more colourful. I eventually identified it as a Large Red damselfly Pyrrhosoma nymphula. It eventually flew off into the garden at 12.15pm.
I did some more gardening, maninly clearing away ready for planting. Too many inverts to mention all. In particular; centipedes, spiders, small black beetle (too quick) a butterfly that also shot through to quick to identify. There appear to be several holly blue butterflies around. There have been at least a pair and a single flying around the tree at the end of our back neighbours garden. It is the only type of blue butterfly in the UK that may be observed in trees.
I did accidentally disturb an black ants nest on the rockery. One of the nursery chambers was beneath a rock I moved. Black ants often have nrsery chambers in such places as the rock warms up as it absorbs the heat of the sun. The larvae and cocoons are moved around the nest to keep them at the right temperature.
As I lifted the rock, ants poured out ready to meet the attacker (me). Another group of worker ants rushed to the larvae and proceded to carry them off underground. Ants have a warning chemical (as do wasps) that galvenises each other into action and makes them aggressive.
Sunday, 4 May 2008
It particularly targetted the buff tailed bumble bee that also visit. Sometimes literaly rambing into the bee knocking it off the flower. Hairy foot bees are solitary bees.