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The warm humid evenings of late July and early August have brought out the flying ants again. These are the very common black pavement ant, Lasius niger. A few years ago we had a nest in one of our large plant pots and it was amazing to see
, and my brain just could not cope with the notion that a woodpecker could be up there.I now know (I've looked it up in books) that these glorious birds are after insects in the turf, as well as dead wood, and that ants are a firm favourite. So I
scale, Parthenolecanium corni, is a beast of curious form indeed. It hardly looks like a living creature at all, and more like a small wart on the plant stem. I noticed them for the first time when photographing ants running up and down the branches
in an old disused sandpit I guess I will never discover, nor how long it had been there.It is much too big for the local foxes to bother with, but I have already seen a solitary bee, an Andrena species, sunning itself on the forehead, and ants have been
, then this is the creature. But, sadly, it is just 'one of the ichneumons', which is quite frankly pathetic. Ichneumons are large and striking insects, allied to bees, wasps and ants. (Ichneumon is also another name for the Egyptian mongoose but we don't get those in East
the middle names, which we had to guess. It was all very tricky and they thought I was joking when I spelled out …A…N…T…. It took some vigorous arm waving to finish the message …O…N…Y…above the laughter.
been a perfectly ordinary word used in everyday language, rather than having the suggestive innuendo it has acquired today.At the end of my garden BioBlitz I’d found several species of hoverfly, ground beetle, ant and leafhopper. A large, but rather