Wednesday, 20 September 2017

Beetles and Spiders!

I was surprised to see a tiny beetle in the bath this morning and even more surprised when it jumped when I touched it. On closer inspection I could see it had thickened hind femora so I think it is one of the Flea Beetles. Now that's all very exciting but sadly it might not have originated in Monty - I suspect it hitched a lift on my clothing as I had been out all day yesterday on the saltmarshes near Avonmouth!
Flea Beetle

At the station along the wall were several spiders - I can't get an ID on them but I think they might be Zygiella x-notata. I have my own Zygiella of course - in my bathroom window - and she is getting fat on fruit flies that originate in my kitchen waste bin.
Possible Zygiella at the station

My own Zygiella!

Michaelmas Daisies were still in flower at the station.
Michaelmas Daisies
Yesterday at the station there was a Syrphus hoverfly and a Common Carder Bee.
Common Carder Bee

Friday, 15 September 2017


A couple of hours on the reserve this morning produced the expected Raven and Grey Wagtail plus a singing Chiffchaff. Insects included 3 Common Darters, a Weevil sp., a Froghopper sp., a Mirid Grass Bug sp., a 24-Spot Ladybird, 2 Harlequin Ladybirds and an Ichneumon sp. There was a Crab Spider Misumena vatia and a Nursery Web Spider. There were the leaf mines of the moths Mompha raschkiella and Stigmella aurata.
24-Spot Ladybird

Stigmella aurella

Common Darter



Crab Spider

Mompha raschkiella

Mirid Grass Bug

Thursday, 14 September 2017

Montpelier Park and station!

This morning in the children's play area there was a collection of feathers on the grass which looked typical of a Sparrowhawk kill. Nearby a party of Great and Blue Tits were feeding in the trees. Near the Old Vicarage a Nephrotoma sp. Cranefly was hiding and near the station a Green Shieldbug was sitting on a leaf. On the wall along the station platform two Tegenaria sp. House Spiders were eyeing each other up.

Green Shieldbug

House Spiders

Sparrowhawk kill

A Sycamore leaf near the station had some galls on it, probably formed by a mite.

Wednesday, 13 September 2017

Crow country!

This morning in the park there was a cacophony of corvids - 3 Magpies, 2 Carrion Crows and 2 Ravens! Must have been a cat around....

Thursday, 7 September 2017

More birds!

In Montpelier Park there was a group of feeding Great and Blue Tits along with a couple of Collared Doves, a Blackbird, 5 Woodpigeons and 2 singing Robins.

At the station a Wren was calling and a Jay flew over. There were loads of House Sparrows this morning - at least 40 birds I would guess - very impressive numbers. Several Large White butterflies around.

Monday, 4 September 2017

St Andrews Park!

The planted flowers are still in bloom and there were loads of Honey Bees, a couple of Buff-tailed Bumblebees, a Small White butterfly and a Syrphus hoverfly with apparently hairy eyes which makes it Syrphus torvus. Near the pond there were two spiders of note - a Wolf Spider and a Metellina species.

Syrphus sp. (probably S. torvus)

Metellina sp.

Small White

Wolf Spider

Some interesting flowers at the top of Richmond Road - a patch of what looks like Common Field Speedwell, lots of Autumn Hawkbit and some Knotgrass.
Autumn Hawkbit



A Coal Tit was calling at the top of Cromwell Road.

Thursday, 31 August 2017


A quick look around Montpelier Park revealed just a calling Coal Tit and 4 Collared Doves, while the station produced a fly-over Jay, groups of calling Blue and Great Tits, a calling Robin and Wren and about 15 House Sparrows. There were lots of Large White butterflies and at least 1 Green-veined White.

A Birch Shieldbug was in the kitchen this afternoon.
Birch Shieldbug