Rain, Work and Shine

Friday, July 29th 2016

We have a busy weekend coming up… on Sunday we are bird ringing at the reserve from 4.30am to 3pm with the Constant Effort Scheme, and an overlap with a Dragonfly Walk at 1pm, then at 4pm we start the Summer BBQ for our Friends and volunteers.
So today was a planning, sorting and practical sort of day which seemed to fly by.

During a morning planning walk in the rain the lush vegetation was low on the paths and board walks so we had to cut them back this afternoon. The Phragmites reeds were hanging rain laden on the net rides and needed special attention.

 The afternoon was sticky and close, flies buzzed around our heads and clegs pecked away at us as we sweated hauling rakings of reeds .This Dor Beetle was crawling on the board walk, always a joy at seeing such a large beetle.

The beautiful underside showing the metallic blues.

These beetles make tunnels up to 18 inches below cow dung piles with side chambers with a store of dung placed inside and the eggs laid for the grubs to feed on when they emerge.

When checking the Field Centre Honey Bees there was a well developed Queen Cell being constructed, and one being de-constructed. The one being de-constructed may be because the grub is not up to spec, and will be killed and the cell destroyed. This causes a few problems as our reigning Queen is fairly new, from last year, and this may indicate that she will swarm, that is taking half the bees with her to form a new colony.  It is late in the year for that! The swarming happens a few days before the new queen emerges. Anyway, watch this space for updates.


 

Thank you Colin for your help doing the bird feeders.


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