I entered the woodland below the windmill to check out the daffodils there. Although they were mostly Lent Lilies and therefore native they wouldn't be attracting much in the way of insects.
Lovely to look at perhaps, but these daffodils were attracting no insects.
25 March, 2018
Daffodils have been planted in their millions around our town and villages and I suspect that many people involved in the planting feel that they are doing 'something for wildlife'. There are insects associated with Narcissus species such as the Large Narcissus Fly, Merodon equestris, a handsome bumblebee mimic whose larvae sometimes are a pest of daffodil bulbs. The Lesser Narcissus Fly, a name attached to both Eumerus funeralis and E. strigatus, can also cause damage to garden daffodils but it is still the case that anyone wishing to create a wildlife garden should look elsewhere. Needless to say, my survey of these swathes of flowers, lovely though they were, produced nothing.
My hopes of finding the Gorse Shieldbug also came to nothing. While bending over and scrutinising gorse buds I heard a series of distinct thumps behind me and turned to see three rabbits scampering up the hillside. Most people will be familiar with the way in which rabbits slam their back feet on the ground as a warning.
The gorse was in bloom of course but, along with the gorse and the narcissi other flowers are now appearing. The blooms of Blackthorn, Prunus spinosa, are beginning to adorn hedges. The specific epithet, spinosa, refers to the fierce thorns with which the shrub is armed. They add to its effectiveness as a barrier and at one time were thought to be poisonous. Of course they are not but the spines may leave small quantities of bacteria in a wound, leading to possible infection.
Blackthorn is now in flower. Near western entrance to Foxhill Farm.
25 March, 2018
|Celandines are now adorning sunny banks. 25 March, 2018|