Monthly Archives: April 2016

Jay

Nic Cairns keeps the excellent photos coming….here’s one of a Jay (Garrulus glandarius), not the easiest bird to spot and photograph….

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Jays are the most colourful of the British corvid species, and are thought to play an important role in the distribution of oaks – they feed on acorns, and may collect and hoard thousands in the autumn, some of which will be forgotten and germinate.  Wollaton Park, where this Jay was photographed, is ideal habitat for these attractive birds.

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Bee-Fly

I’ve featured Bee-flies before, and here’s another excellent close-up, from St.Anns Allotments….

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It’s hard to identify the different species in flight, but this is almost certainly Bombylius major, by far the most common species, and one of only two likely to be seen in April.  Bee-flies are interesting insects, which mimic bees, and lay their eggs in the nests of solitary bees; their larvae then parasitise the growing bee larvae, gradually sucking out its internal fluids.  As illustrated in the photo, adult Bee-flies feed on nectar with their long proboscis.

Thanks to Nic Cairns for the photo.

 

 

 

Tadpoles

Another great photo from St.Anns allotments, courtesy of Nic Cairns

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These are tadpoles of the Common Frog (Rana temporaria), photographed massing in a warm part of a pond at Ecoworks Community Garden.  The tadpoles are still at an early developmental stage, as their external gills can clearly be seen in the photo.  These disappear soon as the tadpole develops a mouth.

Spring Butterflies

The recent warm spring weather has brought the butterflies out…..

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Peacock feeding on Dandelion

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Comma

Both the Peacock (Aglais io) and the Comma (Polygonia c-album) are amongst the relatively few British butterfly species that hibernate, and these will have been overwintering individuals recently emerging in the warm weather.

Thanks to Nic Cairns for the photos, taken at the St.Anns Allotments.

Toad in a hole….

Another photo from the RBRGHA allotments in Wollaton….

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It’s a Common Toad (Bufo bufo), sheltering in a hole.  Thanks to Viv Crump for the picture.  Sadly the clearance of this wildlife-rich allotment site has started, so who knows what will become of this shy amphibian….its future is probably not so rosy.