With the good weather comes the wildlife… beware this is a long post, there’s lots of Cinnabar photos and an ugly Spider at the end.
Yes, a SPIDER at the end, for those arachnophobes out there.
Enough of the disclaimer and onto the buzzy, creepy and fluttery things.
I’m not sure, but I think the Cinnabars might die once they’ve laid their eggs, sad. I found a few dead bodies around a very large Ragwort I have beneath the bird feeders. It may of course be chance, or that spiders caught them but I’d expect to see the bodies hanging in the plant, not on the ground beneath… At least this confirms that I have had more than a couple, as I hoped.
The one below looks to have had a battle with something, I assume a rose, bramble or pyracantha.
So far I’ve only managed a quick record shot of the Small Tortoiseshell, but as the Buddleja is now opening I think I’ll have plenty more to come.
I dread to think how many babies the Sparrows have managed this year; I guess it makes up for last year though as no doubt their numbers struggled due to difficulty finding food for their young. They like to feed the newly hatched chicks on mushed insects and I often see them picking aphids off the roses in the front garden for me. Here they are picking I assume, aphids off hawthorn… Now why couldn’t they pick off all the ermine moths I had the past two years??!
In one of the photos of the Cinnabar, you may spot that one is laying eggs… I checked back a few days later and sure enough some had hatched. Once I spotted the teeny tiny little caterpillar, I spotted more, larger ones on other plants around the garden.
The first Gatekeepers arrived on Thursday… The males usually arrive first, claim their territories and then the females follow a few days to a week later. And this is why I love the Gatekeepers so much…
After weeks of trying to catch the Meadowbrowns and never getting this close, the first day I attempt photos of a Gatekeeper and this is the result…
Last weekend I spotted my first Grasshopper Nymph, so yesterday when I mowed the end of the clover, I was extra careful in case I saw hopping. Sure enough there was. Finally I caught it and moved it to another area I had already strimmed… It sure blends well!
Oh and I spotted a Vapourer caterpillar… I haven’t seen one for around 5 years now. Such an amazing caterpillar for such a boring moth.
Look who’s back!!! It’s the very happy Caterpillar!
Those of you who have been visiting for a while may remember this guy (ok, so not this specific one, but this species). I posted photos around 5/4 years ago… This one refused to walk or move, and wanted only to curl up. It was even a battle to get it off the leaf it was on. Oh well, no happy Caterpillar shots this time, but it’s still cute.
Just in case you’re under the false misapprehension that all my photos are successes.
The Meadowbrown was really difficult to catch, seemingly never stopping. It finally stopped yesterday and I was able to get a couple of relatively close photos. But most were like the two below.
I’ll warn you now, there are spider photos beneath the Meadowbrown shots.
Finally, my first good photo of the Meadowbrown!!
The Ragwort is out… and ‘ere by gum it’s reet nice.
Excuse me, just had to adhere to the Yorkshire stereotype there (sorry, some silly advert on TV which annoys me).
The border looks to be a rainbow of colour, highly unusual for me. And yellow generally isn’t a colour I ever have, let alone feature.
And finally, the ugly creepy crawly Spider. This is a Nursery Web spider, and you can see its namesake in the below montage. She guards her nest well. Always there, if I even touch the leaves she’s out investigating.
In fact, I think she recognises me now and stays off to the side instead.
I wouldn’t mind her, if I didn’t look on the net the first time I spotted one in the garden and discover how huge their fangs are. Now it’s all I can think about. I stay well away.
They’re not known for biting. But I don’t risk it.
She’s actually quite pretty. If only I didn’t have a macro lens and can see those fangs.