Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Changes to Bath Nats Indoor Meetings Programme 28/09/2015 - 14:06

Dear Bath Nats and Friends,
I need to bring your attention to two changes in our indoor meetings programme that have become necessary:-
1. On Monday 5th October, Gary Lamont is unable to present his talk on ‘community orchards’, but I am very pleased to say that at very short notice we have been able to arrange an excellent and very suitable replacement speaker:
Richard Cripps: ‘Orchard Management and Wildlife’
Richard Cripps is an acknowledged expert on the management of traditional orchards and was, for 35 years, Lecturer in Countryside Management at Lackham Agricultural College before becoming a freelance consultant in Garden and Estate Management. Prior to his longstanding position at Lackham, Richard worked for Bath Parks Department.
Please note also that this talk follows the ‘Perry Pear Festival’ in the pear orchard at Dyrham Park, in which Bath Nats will be participating.2. Mya-Rose Craig is unable to present her talk, ‘Born a Birder, as previously scheduled on monday 7th December but will instead present it at BRLSI on Tuesday 8th December (doors open 7.00 pm for 7.30 pm start).

 Please note these changes in your diaries.

Warmest Alan

Friday, 25 September 2015

Saturday 5th September: AROUND MARSHFIELD

A party of eleven members met in the layby west of Marshfield and proceeded then on minor roads and footpaths, northwards mainly, to observe birdlife. During the course of the three hours we were out we observed a total of twenty four species of bird. It was pleasing to see the farmland varieties we expected to see, including Linnet, and Yellowhammer, but the highlight was to observe several Wheatears feeding whilst on passage and the appearance of Whinchats too. Summer visitors  - Swallows, House Martins, Chiff Chaff and Willow Warbler were also observed.Over thirty varieties of flowering plants were encountered, these included Marsh Woundwort and Red, White and Bladder Campions. On the field margins Black Bindweed, Fallopia convolvulus, and a small umbellifer, Fool’s Parsley, Aethusa cynapium, were seen and identified. Butterflies  noted were Painted Lady and Small Tortoiseshell.

Black Bindweed

Pansy fruits 
Field Madder 

Thank you Christopher Phillips.

Thursday, 24 September 2015

Wildlife around Bath 25-9-2015

Ivy bee Colletes hederae 9-9-2015 my Patch,Batheaston.

Recent colonist to the UK, strongly southern distribution but spreading rapidly. Oligolectic on ivy and has a later flight period than other Colletes (end of September through October)

Lasioglossum calceatum(Slender Mining Bee) 9-9-2015 my Patch,Batheaston
There are 33 species in this genus in Britain. All of which look similar to Halictus species. These bees have short pointed tongues and often nest in soils, collecting pollen on the underside of the abdomen and on the legs. 

Carder Bee Bombus pascuorum 7-9-2012 My Patch Batheaston. Habitat: Parks, gardens and other open spaces. Size: Queen 16-18mm, males and workers 10-14mm Species Account: By far the commonest of the three ginger carder bees to be found in the UK.

Best wishes Steve

Tuesday, 22 September 2015

Wildlife around Bath 22-9-2015

Field digger wasp (Mellinus arvensis) with prey
Family: Crabronidae

 A common digger wasp, typically associated with sandy habitats. This one was amongst several other species of diggers between woodland and pasture, around an old wood pile. The adult wasp with provision offspring with multiple flies, buried in tunnels up to around 40cm deep.

Ectemnius cephalotes  Family: Crabronidae
 Another predatory digger wasp, which tunnels in dead wood and provisions offspring with flies.

Thanks to Ian Redding

Monday, 21 September 2015

12th September,The Hop Pole Moth Day

On Saturday 12th September Richard Pooley came along to The Hop Pole Inn in Limpley Stoke to set a moth trap for the Limpley Stoke Moth Day being organised by the Freshford and Limpley Stoke Environment Working Group (FLEWG). The contents of the trap were examined the following morning and were kept safe until the pub opened at midday. Although it was a pretty small catch by experienced mothers standards (37 moths in total, of 7 species) it didn’t matter. We had a great turnout of local residents, including many families coming along to see the moths. With 25 Large Yellow Underwings sitting happily in the trap there were plenty of moths to pass around. The children who came were thrilled with the experience of being able to hold the moths and watch them fly away into the trees and bushes. Many people have since commented on what a great afternoon it was. We at FLEWG are very grateful to Richard, without whom the event wouldn’t have been possible.

Thanks to Caroline Ford

Wednesday, 9 September 2015

First record for Somerset

Metalampra italica 28.008 (BF642a) Female
This moth was caught by one of our moth group members and is a first record for Somerset (VC6) Gen Det by Paul Wilkins.
First recorded in Britain in 2003 originally a native of Italy and spreading northwards. Feeds under bark on decaying wood, especially oak.

Thank you Paul Wilkins