The Way I See Things


Wash and brush up

I believe that this is Syritta pipiens, the thick-legged hoverfly. After gingerly stepping on the bathroom scales this morning, I sympathise with her - it appears that I ate all  the food in London over the weekend, and it's absolutely no wonder that my jeans are too tight for comfort. 

I captured several reasonable shots of her, but I like this one because she's washing her face. To give you an idea of her size, she's resting on a bud of Heuchera 'Marmalade' which is about 3mm long. This is a very common species in England, but easy to overlook because of its size and dark colouring, so I was pleased to have spotted her. There are some more shots here.

The extra is a bee that I found on some ragwort - it was quite easy to photograph, but I then had to spend ages trying to identify it. I may yet be wrong - in which case I hope someone will put me straight - but I think it's a leaf-cutter bee. This is one of the solitary bees - of which there are over 200 species in the UK - and I knew essentially nothing about them until today. I now know that they're superb pollinators, and that the small amount of damage they might do is well outweighed by the benefit of having them around; I'm thinking of putting up a bee hotel to give them a helping hand. There is some quite good information here, and some more shots here.

Many thanks to osuzanna for hosting Tiny Tuesday during Walking Wombat's absence. For other contributions, see here.

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