Friday, 29 July 2016

Linacre Insects -28th July 2016

Yesterday, while I was down at Linacre looking at the birds. I also spent some time photographing some of the insect and plant life to be found at this site. All these records refer to species that I spotted on the banks of the middle and top reservoirs in a 2 hour period. This area is very good for insects, especially this year, because the grass there has been left uncut, which has allowed a good number of flowers and grasses to grow. I'm not an expert on flowers, but I recognised knapweeds, Betony, Cow Parsley, clovers, plantains, Harebells and Hawkbit, amongst the grasses.



The most obvious insects on site are, of course, the butterflies. This year doesn't appear to be great for butterflies, but I still managed to spot the following species: Meadow Brown (10+), Large White (1), Comma (1) Green-veined White (1) and Small Tortoiseshell (1).

Meadow Brown on knapweed


Small Tortoiseshell

One species of damselfly; Common Blue Damselfly, and 1 species of dragonfly; Brown Hawker, were seen. The hawker was flying and feeding over the banks, while the damselflies, including young ones (tenerals), adults and pairs "in tandem" were all over!!

Common Blue Damselflies "in tandem"

The final two group of insects, the hoverflies and bumblebees, were also present in good numbers. I identified Red-tailed, White-tailed and Common Carder Bumblebees.

The hoverflies are a bit trickier(!), but I think I managed to identify five different species, none of which have English names. There were: Eristalsis pertinax, Eristalsis tenax, Eristalsis horticola (known collectively as Drone Flies), Myathropa florea and a Syrphus species, possibly Syrphus ribessi. Please let me know if you think otherwise.

Eristalsis pertinax

Eristalsis tenax

Eristalsis horticola

Myathropa florea

Syrphus ribesii

Hopefully, these photos will inspire you to stop and have a look at the many hoverfly species that can be found on a sunny day. If you would like a good field guide, have a look at this one here, it's very informative, with super photos and explanations about the different species.

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