Wednesday, 29 April 2009

Large Red Damselfly at The Lodge

Large Red Damselfly
Basking near Jack's Pond

Smooth Newts at The Lodge

Smooth Newt

Smooth Newt

There are plenty of Smooth Newts performing courtship displays in the heath ponds at The Lodge currently

Tuesday, 28 April 2009

Small Coppers

There were loads of these chaps out this lunchtime on the heath at The Lodge.

Saturday, 25 April 2009

Emperor moths mating

The photos below are of a pair of Emperor moths mating at Coopers Hill on 25/04/2009. you can see the size difference between the male, who is also brighter coloured, and the much larger, greyer female. Photos by Melissa Banthorpe.

Wednesday, 22 April 2009

First Damsels of the year

Saw my first damselfy of the year today, a Large Red which had only just struggled out of the water from the look of him.

A spider

A unidentified spider taken this lunchtime at The Lodge.

Tuesday, 21 April 2009

Six legs one, eight legs nil

A spider-hunting wasp Anoplius viaticus dragging its victim into hiding at Cooper's Hill, before digging a burrow and eventually burying it, taking a total of two hours from capture.

Picture by Keith Balmer


The business end of a Green Tiger Beetle, at Cooper's Hill today (21st April). There were hundreds, possibly thousands there today.

Picture by Keith Balmer

A pair of 'kippers

Here's a Dingy Skipper seen today (21st April) at Marston Vale Millennium Country Park...

and a Grizzled Skipper at the same place two days earlier...

Thought I'd post underside photos for a change.

Photos by Keith Balmer

Monday, 20 April 2009

Orange-tip at Beeston


Weekend butterflies

A green-veined white (Pieris napi), a peacock (Inachis io) and a small copper (Lycaena phlaeas)

Tawny mining bee

A female tawny mining bee (Andrena fulva) at The Lodge.

Sunday, 19 April 2009

Bee-fly nectaring

Had another stab today at getting a decent shot of a bee-fly (Bombylius major) nectaring on ground ivy. These are the best of several hundred attempts. (Glad I wasn't using film!). Even at 1/4000 sec the wings are still blurred.

Photos by Keith Balmer


This male Emperor emerged this morning (19th April) and is absolutely pristine. Photo by Andy Banthorpe.

Saturday, 18 April 2009

Newt sp.

I dug a pond last autumn and was thrilled to find newts in it last week - I assume this is a Smooth Newt but wondered if it might be a female Palmate. Can anyone help?

Thursday, 16 April 2009

Nursery web spider

A nursery web spider (Pisaura mirabilis) resting (very) briefly on the base of a tree at The Lodge.

Wednesday, 8 April 2009

Speckled wood

My first speckled wood (Pararge aegeria) for the year, sunbathing along the wooded bridleway through The Lodge reserve.

Another unidentified bee

Another unidentified bee taken in the gardens at The Lodge.

Honey bee

Another honey bee taken at The Lodge.

Cuckoo bumblebee and friend

A cuckoo bumblebee with an unpleasant close-up of a unwanted hanger-on!

Wednesday, 1 April 2009

A bee and a wasp

A bee and wasp taken at The Lodge this lunchtime (I'm just checking on what the bee is, but I think the wasp will have to remain a mystery!).