Monday, 27 March 2017

Blaencarau COP

Another warm sunny day for spring but with a strong cold breeze. First Tiger Beetles of the year [4] were out. 4 species of hoverfly seen with Cheilosia albipila being new for Caerau. Also a very distinctive tachinid fly in Gonia picea was feeding on dandelion and was new for the valley. 4 Gwynne's mining bee and 6 White-tailed Bumblebee were seen. 4 Chiffchaff were present [2 singing males and 2 quiet ones feeding in the understorey. Other birds included a pair of Jay, Green Woodpecker and 2 pairs of Meadow Pipit. No butterflies, day moths or new flowering plants yet.

 Cheilosia albipila - a bit out of focus [I was stretching to get photo at about 10 foot] but you can see it's furry thorax, orange antennae and wholly orange hind tibia [female only] and was exactly where the book said it would be - late march on the edge of woodland feeding high up on willow catkins. New for Caerau, there have been a few records down Lletty Brongu sewage works at the bottom/lower valley
 tachinid fly Gonia picea1st for valley - wide brown/orange forehead and white stripes on the abdomen
 Green Tiger Beetle - common in spring early summer
The kids have already burnt half the mountain area, luckily earlier than they normally burn it, so bird/nest casualties will be at a minimum.

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