I stayed at home yesterday and went on safari in my garden. I have decided to see how many species I can record over the coming weeks when it is unwise to go out and, let’s face it soon we probably won’t be going out at all, if the events of the weekend continue.
I have started trying to identify slugs, which are relatively easy to find and don’t run away, but are pretty difficult to identify some of the time.
If my identification is correct it may be one of the few, perhaps even the first Hampshire record, however I am not getting too excited as identification is far from certain!
Where there are slugs there are also woodlice, I found two species of those, fortunately easier to identify.
The sunshine has brought out more insects and over the weekend I saw my first beeflies and quite a lot of bees.
This solitary bee was very sluggish and was probably subject to parasitism, the slightly swollen abdomen also hints at this.
There were also lots of the bee mimic hoverflies, especially Eristalis pertinax.
The other very prominent insects were ladybirds, I saw lots of individuals of three species, the most numerous being pine ladybirds, a small black species with red markings.
At present Blashford Lakes is still open for walking, with limited parking in the entrance gateways, but car park closed to keep numbers low and please keep access to the gateways free. Remember as the paths are relatively narrow you will need to consider stepping aside to allow someone to pass in order to keep the 2m distancing, another reason why it is not appropriate to have large numbers of people on site. Also please do not travel long distances to the reserve, make the most of places more local to home, investigate your garden if you have one, there is nature almost everywhere.