Flowers and Insects

Sunday, May 26th 2019

Almost daily flowers are opening and the invertebrate populations are appearing.  The middle moor has been green but now there is colour across it.  Yellow as the Yellow Rattle opens,

Yellow Rattle

and the Meadow Buttercups.  Once the flowers open so the insects arrive.  This one, as yet un-named, was covered in pollen sheltering from the wind, deep inside the flower.

Meadow Buttercup and insect

It is important to have several clovers for the different bee species we have recorded.  Red, Zig Zag and White clovers grow throughout the reserve.  Red Clover is the first to flower and there are hints of pink across the middle moor.

Red Clover

Wild Strawberry was once found in a small sheltered part along Risedale Beck but it is showing its white flowers in many more areas of the reserve now.  These tiny micro moths, Micropterix calthella, usually associated with feeding on pollen from buttercups, were enjoying the open flowers.

Wild Strawberry and  Micropterix calthella,

House Martins were calling and feeding as they skimmed Spigot Mere, but then landed on the far bank, where some water was leaking into the Mere.  They were collecting mud for nest building.  Camera as usual was at full zoom!

House Martins gathering mud

The winter seed crop area has been ploughed and planted.  Hopefully the forecast rain will encourage germination.  Although the crop is aimed at birds, bees, butterflies and many other insects utilise the flowers as they grow.

Winter seed crop


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