Stags and Bees
The garden MV has not been switched on for several weeks, the longest period of idleness for many a year. Last night, at dusk, and not without a touch of ceremony, the bulb was lit and I wandered up to the trap to make sure that all was well. OUCH! I looked down at my foot to see the bee that had stung me - it looked like a Buff-tailed to me.
This morning I peered in the trap to see a fair number of moths, at least 20+ bees and also the beast that is pictured above - a male Stag Beetle. I have only seen a single female in 30 years of living here, but used to come across them regularly in Cheam Village when I resided there. I understand that they are still doing well there this summer. As for the bee numbers, I now notice a hole in the ground close to a Lawson's Cypress stump that is being used by them, just inches away from the MV. The trap will need to be re-sited...
This afternoon, elder daughter Rebecca and I visited Park Downs - (it was a choice between that or Bluewater Shopping Centre!!) We visited the 'orchid fields' that, whilst not up to the standards of 2015, seemed to be in better nick than last summer. We counted c75 Bee Orchids (below), plus 1,250 Pyramidal Orchids. Grass Vetchling (bottom) were also in healthy numbers. A check on the Man Orchids revealed them to be swamped in vegetation - they must be in danger of complete shade out in the next year or two.