Posted on September 2, 2022
The hibiscus flowers in the communal grounds at Greenwood House are looking their best and are a great magnet for bees, butterflies and other insects. Sometimes there can be too much of a good thing. This bee found itself completely smothered with pollen after visiting the flowers and had to take a bit of time out to comb itself freer before flying away.
Posted on July 22, 2022
Pictures of the Wild Marjoram (Origanum vulgare) at the Charlton Down Nature Reserve yesterday with a couple of the many insect visitors greedily supping up the nectar.
Posted on July 13, 2022
A swarm of honey bees has landed on the brick wall of the local gym. The gym is in a converted chapel from the days when the buildings in the village of Charlton Down were all part of a hospital. The bees have been trying to enter the building high up where there is an air brick in the wall. Apparently, someone will be coming out shortly to take them away and put them in a hive. Meanwhile they are buzzing around and crawling over each other in what looks like a state of confusion.
Posted on June 30, 2022
Bumblebees were enjoying the lavender larder yesterday between the blustery showers – but butterflies were lying low in my usual haunts around the village.
Posted on June 26, 2021
I think this is a Buff-tailed Humblebee (Bombus terrestris) but I could be wrong. The slightly larger White-tailed Bumblebee (Bombus lucorum) looks very similar. Perhaps you know the difference and can put me right? Anyway, there were several of them busy getting nectar and covering themselves with pollen in the Charlton Down Nature Reserve last evening.
Posted on April 18, 2021
Does any one of my Greenwood House neighbours want a Field Studies Council foldout guide to identifying bumblebees? Contact me if you want to put your name in the hat for a chance to have this free guide. I will need a flat number to post it through your letterbox if you are the lucky one.
Posted on April 17, 2021
There are lots of ways that you can encourage bumble bees to thrive. All our British pollinating insects seem to be in decline, especially the bees which are so important for ensuring the fertilisation of all our fruit, vegetable, and cereal crops.
One way to attract bumble bees is by planting the right flowers and paying attention to the kinds of places that they like to nest. The new Great Sunflower Project which is discussed on the Science Friday site gives some hints and tips on what you can do, no matter whether you have a garden, a small patch of ground, window box or outdoor planters. You can listen to a podcast [or I can let you read a transcript of the conversation if you are one of my neighbours in Greenwood House – let me know].