Archive for June 20th, 2012

20th June 2012, Wednesday

When is a bee not a bee?

When it’s the Red Data Book soldierfly Long-horned General (Stratiomys longicornis). The clue is the fact that this only has two wings (bees have four) and the antennae are made of only three segments (10 plus in bees). Still it’s a pretty good solitary bee mimic which had me fooled for a moment. You can also tell that this is a male due to the fact that eyes meet in the middle. In Britain this species largely occurs on the coast in the south-east, the larvae being associated with brackish pools. It’s a few years since I’ve seen it here (and there have been very few records) so it was nice to see this one outside Lime Kiln today feeding on biting stonecrop.
Long-horned general on biting stonecrop

20th June 2012, Wednesday

White (and a bit of yellow)

Ox-eye daisy is prolific on our lawn this year – responding really well to growing a hay crop each summer, and bringing in the hoverflies.


The stand of purple toadflax to the right of

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20th June 2012, Wednesday


 Some fields behind Pett Level are now showing very good cover of red clover as a result of applying green hay to the fields.  Great for the scarce bumblebees found in the area.


The graph below

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20th June 2012, Wednesday


Yellow is the dominant colour on parts of the Dungeness RSPB reserve – around the margins of some of the gravel pits, and around the edges of the shingle beach where shingle grades into alluvium.  This is due to the abundance of bird’s-foot trefoil Lotus corniculatus, providing a bonanza for pollen and nectar feeders.