Patched Leafcutter-bee

There was heavy rain for much of the day, but by late afternoon the sun appeared, and within minutes the flowers were covered with insects, and I spotted a small group of freshly hatched bugs on the awn of our Giant Oat-grass (see extra). 

Although we have many native flower species that are popular with insects, including Viper's Bugloss and Wood Vetch, some garden plants are also important sources of pollen and nectar, including the gorgeous Sea Holly 'Big Blue' (see extra) which thrives on our regime of benign neglect. This Patched Leafcutter-bee was very busy nectaring on the Wood Vetch.

It turned into a beautiful evening, full of birdsong - at least three Blackbirds are still holding territories and a pair of Great Spotted-woodpeckers were calling for some time while investigating the local trees for insect larvae. Just before dinner I spotted a large dragonfly land in our neighbour's Monterey Cypress - it was an Emperor, the first we've seen in the garden in over 25 years.

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