Sunday, 31 May 2015

St Andrews Park

A rather cool and blustery visit to the park produced an elusive family of tits playing hide and seek among the leaves, so I couldn't get many glimpses of the species, although I think they might have been Coal Tits. Also I'm happy to report that the Tree Bumblebee nest near the dead wood habitat is still thriving, although I couldn't get a photo of the constant coming and going. At the pond a Buff-tailed Bumblebee was nectaring in one of the Yellow Iris.
Buff-tailed Bumble and Iris
Some nice Common Mallow flowers were seen near the arches.
Common Mallow

Thursday, 28 May 2015

St Pauls Cemetery

Another look round this nice little bit of habitat this afternoon revealed my first Leaf-cutter Bee of the year, a 14-spot Ladybird, a couple of Harlequin Ladybirds, some Honey Bees and a Syrphus hoverfly. The usual birds were present including Goldfinch and House Sparrow.
Leaf-cutter Bee

14-spot Ladybird

Syrphus hoverfly

Wednesday, 27 May 2015

Montpelier Park

In the park this morning there was a family of Wrens, 5 or so Long-tailed Tits, a singing Coal Tit, a Blackbird, a Carrion Crow and a Dunnock.


Wren parent with food

At the station there were a couple of Dock Leaf Bugs basking in the early sunshine.
Dock Leaf Bugs

Monday, 25 May 2015

Breeding Bird Survey

My BTO Breeding Bird Survey today produced the following species and totals. Not a particularly remarkable list, but I did see juvenile Robin in Station Road and a Blackbird carrying a paper bag in its bill and flying across the Lower Ashley Road with it which was rather amusing.

Lesser Black-backed Gull   12 
Herring Gull    2 
Feral Pigeon   23 
Woodpigeon       15 
Collared Dove   3 
Swift                  2 
Magpie  10 
Carrion Crow   4 
Goldcrest   1 
Blue Tit       3 
Great Tit     5 
Coal Tit      2 
Blackcap      1 
Wren            8 
Starling     2 
Blackbird   9 
Robin  12 
Dunnock    4 
House Sparrow  30 
Greenfinch     1 
Goldfinch      12 

Sunday, 24 May 2015

See no weevil

At the station this morning there was a tiny Weevil on the wall which I have not been able to ID. Also of note was a new spider for the patch - a Stripe-legged Spider Harpactea hombergi. A Common Buzzard drifted overhead mobbed by gulls.
Harpactea hombergi

Weevil species

Friday, 22 May 2015


This morning on the reserve: a Common Whitethroat singing and showing well across the iron bridge, a Chiffchaff, 2 Blackcaps and a pair of Grey Wagtails on the brook.
Grey Wagtail

Common Whitethroat

I am absolutely thrilled to record my first ever Baccha elongate hoverfly! Always wanted to see this species. It was at Lynmouth Road. Other insects included a Cryptocephalus beetle, a Sawfly species, a Nettle-tap Moth and a Green Shieldbug.
Baccha elongata

Cryptocephalus beetle


Green Shieldbug

Nettle-tap Moth

Along Hurlingham Road was a nice flowering Guelder-rose and lots of Cleavers.

A juvenile Blackbird was in the garden and nearby a flock of at least 13 Magpies were on a roof in Richmond Road.
Juvenile Blackbird

Thursday, 21 May 2015


I can't remember the last time I recorded Common Earwig on the patch if at all, but a nice specimen was at St Paul's Cemetery this afternoon. There were also several Honey Bees, a Buff-tailed Bumblebee and a Common Carder Bee. Birds included several House Sparrows, 5 Starlings, a Carrion Crow and lots of Goldfinches.
Common Earwig

A couple of Jackdaws flew over the station this morning, also the Blackcap was heard. The disused platform was full of flowers including Ox-eye Daisy, Hogweed, Red Valerian and Wood Avens. Thick-thighed Flower-beetles were seen once again.
Ox-eye Daisy with Thick-thighed Flower-beetle

Hogweed and Red Valerian

Wednesday, 20 May 2015

Montpelier Station

This morning there were at least 4 Swifts feeding high towards Cheltenham Road and a Blackcap was in song. Several Thick-thighed Flower-beetles were on Ox-eye Daisies near the disused platform.

Tuesday, 19 May 2015

Hectic nestbox action!

Got back from a break in Suffolk to find that the Blue Tits have hatched in my nestbox and the adults are busy feeding them every 30 seconds or so.

Thursday, 7 May 2015

A tale of three bugs

Back to St Pauls Cemetery this afternoon which is turning out to be True Bug capital of Bristol! There were several Hairy Shieldbugs, Rhopalus subrufus and Green Shieldbugs, many of them mating. Great to know the habitat is right for these underrated insects. Also several Honeybees, a Flesh Fly, a tiny bee (probably Lasioglossum sp.) and a probable Platycheirus hoverfly. Birds were limited to a few Goldfinches, House Sparrows and Herring Gulls, the latter on surrounding roofs.
Rhopalus subrufus

Flesh Fly

Green Shieldbug

Hairy Shieldbug


Possible Lasioglossum sp.

Monday, 4 May 2015


An Orange-tip butterfly was flitting around the disused platform at the station this afternoon, accompanied by a Green-veined White. A Blackcap was singing vigorously nearby.

A pair of Blue Tits are using my nest box again. I replaced the crumbling old box with a new one in December and they have accepted it, which is good to see.

Sunday, 3 May 2015

St Andrews Park

A guided walk around the park this morning produced the following birds:

Goldfinch - lots around, calling, singing and showing well
Chaffinch - at least 2 heard singing
Greenfinch - 1 heard briefly at the pond
Blackbird - a few around
Mistle Thrush - 1 seen
Goldcrest - 1 heard singing
Robin - several heard
Blue Tit - a couple heard
Great Tit - 1 distant bird heard singing
House Sparrow - several near the pond
Herring Gull - a couple overhead
Woodpigeon - several seen and heard
Collared Dove - 1 seen and heard
Carrion Crow - several seen
Wren - 1 or 2 heard
Magpie - 1 or 2 seen

Saturday, 2 May 2015

Garden visitors

A female Blackbird, a Dunnock and several House Sparrows were busy taking dried mealworms from just in front of the window throughout the day, suggesting they have families to feed.

House Sparrow and Blackbird

Friday, 1 May 2015


Today on the reserve: pair of Grey Wagtails on brook, 1 Willow Warbler, 2 Chiffchaff, c6 Blackcap, 1 Bullfinch (Simons Grove), Long-tailed Tits, a Common Buzzard and Greenfinches displaying. About 15 House Sparrows also seen.


Grey Wagtail
 Insects included my first ever Epistrophe eligans! Awesome! Other hoverflies as last week - Rhingia roastrata, Eristalis and Syrphus, Melanostoma scalare. Also a Flesh Fly and an Andrena nitida mining bee - my first ever.
Andrena nitida

Epistrophe eligans

Corky-fruited Water-dropwort, Mouse-eared Hawkweed, Birds-foot Trefoil and Wild Garlic were all in flower.
Corky-fruited Water-dropwort

Mouse-eared Hawkweed

Birds-foot Trefoil

St Andrews Park produced lots of Goldfinches and a Common Carder Bee.
Common Carder Bee

In Station Road, Montpelier there was quite a lot of Black Medick in flower whilst at the station there were some Long-tailed Tits and 4 Starlings.
Black Medick