The last few days have been sunny but windy and not that warm. However they have been great for seeing insects. This is actually because they dislike the wind so congregate in any sunny sheltered spots, where they can really warm up. Even better if there are also flowers to feed from. The strong easterly winds have meant that the path along the western side of Ellingham Lake has been the place to be, the trees keep the wind off and, in the afternoon the strong sunshine has made the flowering Hawthorns really attractive to loads of hoverflies, bees and beetles. There have been several Rose Chafers, pictured left, on the blossom there, they really bury their heads into the flowers when they feed. It is also good to see the Hawthorn, the traditional "May" actually flowering in May, recent warm winters have had it mostly out in April some years.
The variety of spring flowers out now around the reserve is increasing daily. The bluebells are just about at their best, but they are not the only blue flowers. Although it is really common the Germander Speedwell is a very attractive plant and liked by quite a few small hoverflies and bees.
I also post the picture because I realised I had not posted any plants so far. I have also opted for "medium" images this time as I thought they might look better. I reckon I should be able to get pictures of a thousand species of various kinds of life at Blashford, so far only about ten or so posted here so a long way to go!
Not much news from today, the Common terns seem to be really settling in on the rafts on Ivy Lake, there were thirteen there this morning. The Coot nesting on the raft outside the Ivy South hide is still sitting and the Great Crested Grebes are still, slowly, nest building on one of the other rafts, hopefully they will give some good photo opportunities later.