Archive for April, 2009

Holes in the walls too?

Posted in garden, insects, oxfordshire, photography with tags , , , on 22 April 2009 by bramblejungle

After mining bees in the lawn, how about mason bees in the walls? In fact they don’t make holes in your walls, but nest in existing holes in brickwork or timber, or for that matter in the stems of dead plants. Like mining bees, red mason bees are great pollinators (did I spell it right this time?) and a welcome addition to the wildlife garden.
Red mason bee (Osmia rufa, m)

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Bees and lawn aeration

Posted in garden, insects, oxfordshire, photography, wildlife with tags , , , on 10 April 2009 by bramblejungle

I found quite a few of these in the garden a day or two ago:

Tawny Mining Bee (Andrena fulva)

It turned out they are a solitary bee – the Tawny Mining Bee, Andrena fulva – which explained the half-dozen or so mini-volcanoes in the lawn

Bee's nest

It seems Andrena fulva are completely harmless; in fact they aerate the lawn and pollenate everything in sight, so they are very welcome here. There’s a good article about them at kendall-bioresearch.co.uk.

Beetles

Posted in garden, insects, oxfordshire, photography, wildlife with tags , , on 6 April 2009 by bramblejungle

If you count weevils and ladybirds, there are now so many that I’ve included a “beetles” link on the sidebar. Here are a couple of recent additions to the collection:

A tiny rove beetle:

Rove beetle (Tachyporus hypnorum)

and a scarlet lily beetle (another one for the “Garden Nightmare” collection)

Lily beetle

Nest building

Posted in "red kite", birds, flight, oxfordshire, photography, wildlife with tags , , on 4 April 2009 by bramblejungle

Red kites have a reputation for using exotic nesting materials (anything from gloves to teddy-bears, according to redkites.net). This one is carrying wool, presumably for the same purpose.

Nesting

Sparrow food?

Posted in birds, garden, insects, oxfordshire, photography, wildlife with tags , , , on 4 April 2009 by bramblejungle

If you’re a rose gardener, you may not like this photo too much – but if you’re a sparrow trying to raise a brood of chicks, greenfly are just what you need right now

Greenfly

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