Tuesday, 11 April 2017

Bryn Cynan lanes, Llangynywdd

These lanes are usually sheltered from the wind and in today's sunshine are a bit of a sun trap. So a number of first blooms for the year were in evidence in Garlic Mustard, Herb Robert, Green Alkanet, Germander Speedwell, Red Campion and Common Vetch. Birds were in full song with 7 Blackcap [always good counts here], 4 Chiffchaff, 3 Willow Warbler and 2 pairs of Swallow back at the various barns in the area as well as a few drifting through. Because of the shelter from the wind and various early blooms had 10 species of hoverfly with firsts of the year of Platycheirus clypeatus agg., Syrphus vitripennis, Cheilosia pagana and Helophilus pendulus. Common Carder Bee and Buff-tailed Bumblebee were joined by 8 Large Bee-fly, but no butterflies about.

 Cheilosia pagana - orange antennae, thorax sheen, leg colouring, bare face point to this species.
 Helophilus pendulus - hind tibia 1/3 black only.
 Melanostoma scalare [female] - notice heavy dusting on the frons tells it apart from female Melanostoma mellinum.
 Platycheirus clypteatus agg. - there are 5 species in this sub-group and females can't be separated from photos.
 Syrphus vitripennis [female] - hind femur [can't see in this angle photo] is black so its not ribesii, caught and checked eyes are bare and you also need to check the 2nd basal cell under magnification for micro-hair coverage, surprisingly this one fits vitripennis for first of year. All the syrphus today that I didn't check were very small as well as this one.

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