Friday, 20 May 2011


I was not at Blashford today, but as I was working in my garden I was watching the bumblebees, following on from doing the beewalk yesterday. I had noticed yesterday that the early bumblebee and woodland bumblebee particularly liked feeding at green alkanet flowers, while the moss carder bee was at red campion flowers, where I had seen them before. Today I noticed that I had lots of white-tailed bumblebees feeding at yellow rattle flowers in my lawn, yes I have that sort of lawn. The early bumblebees were at herb robert and geraniums and red-tailed bumblebees at dame's violet and saxifrages. Of course this is due to the differences in the tongue length of the various species and it highlights the importance of having a wide range of flower types available. It also enable the different species to avoid competition.

I also enjoyed a singing firecrest in the garden, I have seen them in the autumn and winter but this was my first breeding season record and a new species for the tetrad in the breeding birds atlas. This four year project is finishing this year and wants as many records of, especially, confirmed breeding as it can get, so if you know of a species breeding near you send it in as a "Roving record" via the BTO website.

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