Thursday, 3 June 2010


I would love to know more about bees. I have the "Bumblebees" Naturalists' Handbook by Oliver Prys-Jones and Sarah Corbet but I still can't decide if this is Bombus hortorum.

They are also incredibly difficult to photograph as they move so quickly in and out of the camera's "depth of field".

There are a myriad of different bees on the garden cotoneaster today and I will have a look at the Natural History Museum's key to try and sort some of them out.

I am slightly more confident about the Osmia rufa utilising the cardboard tubes in my nesting box obtained from the (now defunct) Oxford Bee Company. Even here though there is at least one other species of mason bee using the tubes. There are also Ruby-tail Wasps (Chrysis species)lurking around the brick-work where their hosts (mason bees/wasps) may be using the holes that I have drilled into the mortar. Michael Archer once told me that there are several different Chrysis species that can't be differentiated by photographs alone.

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