Tracey Kitching

Latest posts by Tracey Kitching

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Chased by bee

Posted: 11/07/2017 at 15:03

I had my house extended a few years ago and, above the windows, there are these little red things set in the mortar which (so I'm told) are to let moisture out of the cavity. You end up with a couple of what looks like the open ends of rawl plugs showing - and every year I get solitary bees nesting in them. Not only do I see them flying in and out - you can see the plugs are filled in with soil.

Chased by bee

Posted: 11/07/2017 at 10:30

Few answers...

Mark56 - Verbenas - I think so, but I'm trying to leave it as wild as possible so only trample round it once a month or so, for a weed. Different bees have diff flower preferences so my Foxgloves, round the back, get large bumble bees - whereas smaller species seem to prefer my Geraniums, Lavender etc.

There are stepping stones on the right that go across to the Hawthorn hedge, which has dozens of birds nesting in it all year round. I have a hole cut in it with feeders hanging inside, to try and protect them from the Sparrow Hawk a bit. I only planted it up June 2016 so, aside from rust and bunnies, it's starting to look nice. There are a lot of self seeded California Poppies which look nice - but don't seem to attract bees. They certainly prefer the Flanders Poppies and I leave those to seed as well.

Bee witched - nucs - ah, thank you. Haven't heard my neighbour call them that, but have heard from him when he has been splitting hives and trying to prevent swarms.

Mary370 - you can take bee keeping courses (my neighbour went to Sheffield for his) and that might be a good way for you to see if you think it's something for you. The problem is when they swarm they tend to do it somewhere else. As I said - I'm ok with it but it's not a nice sound and you get a lot of stray bees flying round the main ball. 2-3 times they have swarmed very high up in one of my trees and my neighbour had to get suited up and use a ladder in the garden behind to get at them more easily. I would think that the swarming would be the one thing that would potentially upset your neighbours. I'm not trying to put you off - but I'd thought a few years ago it would be nice to have bees - and then was put off once I'd experienced a swarm in my near vicinity. I prefer to supply the food

Trying to find what animal is visiting my garden

Posted: 11/07/2017 at 07:39

Friends have said my pond is like a watering hole on the Serengeti. I think it demonstrates that you should NEVER put chemicals in a pond. And that you never know what's in your garden - my pond is only a path width from one of the front windows so it's not exactly remote.

I think I've got my camera on too sensitive as blowing plants can trigger it - but I like the night time ones and want to make sure I capture everyone who visits. It's really frustrating when you sometimes just get a pair of eyes briefly picked up in the distance.

There are a few of my vids on the link below...have hundreds in my PC and having to start getting ruthless. Pigeons look very funny when they wade in up to their shoulders and have a nap - but do I need it on film again? See....addictive.

Chased by bee

Posted: 10/07/2017 at 17:43

I've reported the site as I've rebooted and tried Edge/IE and Chrome and still can't add a picture.

Bee witched - sorry, missed your response, what are nucs?

Chased by bee

Posted: 10/07/2017 at 14:59

Something wrong....have attached pics loads of times before but it's just adding a black cross. Never mind.

Chased by bee

Posted: 10/07/2017 at 14:58

OMG! That's awful.

I have had Lavatera (bee magnets) for 20 years but last year the ones round the back got rust so I had to take them out. I put 3 new ones in the front but they've come up this year with rust so they've had to go too. I've also had a wild bunny visiting the front daily for about 10 months and it's amazing how much one little thumper can eat!! He's cute as a button - but if I ever manage to attach this photo - this was a month ago and the bare patches are all down to him.

Chased by bee

Posted: 10/07/2017 at 11:34

Oh yes. I'm a big supporter of him having hives and we regularly talk bee, although he's moved a few down to a site near a market gardeners now. Last year I took up my front lawn and turned it all over to bee friendly flowers.

They don't show any gratitude though - they head straight to a field with Poppies in  

Chased by bee

Posted: 10/07/2017 at 06:19

Agree. I think I was just unlucky....twice!. But it has only been twice in about 7 years and his hives have about 40,000 bees each. Always amazing to see them when they swarm and it's usually in my garden. I know they are supposed to be less likely to sting when swarming but it's a really scary sound and I don't take any chances and head inside.

Trying to find what animal is visiting my garden

Posted: 09/07/2017 at 18:03

Icefox cameras are really good. Mine was £100 - plus £8 for a memory card from Amazon. The version I bought is no longer available (on Amazon) - but sure there will be other Icefox models on there

I've had it a year and it works for stills and video, day and night and captures audio on the video.

It's aimed at my wildlife pond and, apart from a wide variety of birds, I've captured (so far) half a dozen local cats (drinking and chasing a mouse), mice (1 with enormous ears that seems to bounce), 2 rats playing (!), numerous hogs (2 together one night, 3 nights when one swam the full length of the pond and a baby one last night), a fox, frogs - and a disturbing flying thing that looked like a massively oversized dragonfly (that one made me wary of going out in the dark!).

And now I know why my hundreds of taddies have dwindled in number - female Blackie fishes them out, bashes them on the stones and swallows them whole. The male, interestingly, seems to prefer my pond snails.

It used 8 batteries but they last about a month or more. I don't put it out when it's windy / raining or I end up with a couple of hundred 50mb films to wade through.

Warning - it gets addictive!!!!!

Pond edging

Posted: 09/07/2017 at 17:50

Grow something along the side that will hang over. There are shaped slate stones all around mine but you can't see them on the right, in summer, for the Nemesia. Flowers drop in - but they net off easy enough.

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