Tuesday, 30 August 2016

Montpelier Park

Every year the Horse Chestnut trees in Montpelier Park get a right old battering from this pesky critter, the Horse Chestnut Miner moth Cameraria ohridella . It was first observed in Macedonia, in northern Greece, in 1985 and the first time it was recorded in the UK was in 2002 in Wimbledon of all places. Now it has spread throughout England and into Scotland. Studies are ongoing to assess just how serious this tiny moth is proving to be to our Horse Chestnuts. I took these photos this morning in the park - there are absolutely swarms of the little buggers - they are very attractive when you get a close look at them, but they make a right old mess of the leaves.
Horse Chestnut Miner

Juvenile Woodpigeon

Also in the park were a couple of juvenile Woodpigeons in what looked like a family group.

Saturday, 27 August 2016

Birds on the move!

Evidence of birds moving through Montpelier this morning was provided by a Blackcap which called briefly then flew between the trees and a calling Chiffchaff, both at the station. Also a singing Great Tit and Coal Tit and a Jay. Strangely, a Blackbird sang briefly - unusual at this time of year. Nearby a Garden Spider and an Eristalis hoverfly together with a Large White butterfly and a Cluster Fly.

Large White

Cluster Fly

At St Andrews Park there were several Green Shieldbugs, a Groundbug species (possibly Nettle Groundbug?) and a Leaf-cutter Bee. A Juvenile Blackbird was a surprise - obviously from a late brood - and a couple of Jays were flying around.
Juvenile Blackbird

Leaf-cutter Bee

Green Shieldbug

Groundbug sp.
Yesterday a Sparrowhawk landed briefly on the roof of the neighbours opposite but it didn't stay to be photographed.

Wednesday, 24 August 2016

Montpelier Station

Not much to report this morning other than a Myathropa florea hoverfly, a Common Wasp and a few Blue and Great Tits feeding in the shrubbery.
Myathropa florea

Tuesday, 23 August 2016

False Widow!

Another False Widow spider in the bath last night - another male! This morning a Coal Tit was singing in the park and a Small White butterfly was at the station.
False Widow

Saturday, 13 August 2016

St Andrews Park

A repeat performance of last week, with several Xylota segnis hoverflies, a Garden Spider and 2 Speckled Wood butterflies. Also several Common Carder Bees, Buff-tailed and Red-tailed Bumblebees in the park and on lavender in a front garden near the park. A Robin put in an appearance - the first bird I've seen for ages on the patch!

At Montpelier Station there were 2 Holly Blue butterflies and a Harlequin Ladybird.

Sunday, 7 August 2016

St Andrews Park

Invertebrate highlights in the park this morning included a Holly Blue and a Speckled Wood, at least 2 Xylota segnis hoverflies, a Sawfly sp., the tachinid fly Eriothrix rufomaculata, a Harlequin Ladybird, a Garden Spider, Red-tailed and Buff-tailed Bumblebees and a Common Carder Bee. Still lots of tadpoles in the pond and a rather ill-looking fish.
Fish with possible fungal infection

Holly Blue

Xylota segnis

Common Carder bee

Eriothrix rufomaculata

Thursday, 4 August 2016

A Jay, a Wren and a Spider

At the station this morning a Jay was calling noisily and a Wren sang intermittently. On the wall alongside the platform was a rather handsome Striped-legged Spider Harpactea hombergii.
Harpactea hombergii
The train stopped as usual along Narroways so I was able to take a shot of the Rosebay Willowherb and Wild Clematis through the window!