I spotted this toad near my manure pile this week.
It would be great to build up a record of the wildlife that we see on our site. If you spot something interesting, please let Norman know. Better still, if you can catch a photo or some video please pass it onto him at gfaawebhelper [at] gmail.com.
Thanks to David for pointing out this beautiful Elephant Hawk-Moth visiting on his plot recently. What a stunner! Otherwise known as Deilephila Elpenor (that’s easy for you to say!)
Read more on Wikipedia.
We are keen to build up photos and information about all the wildlife our site supports. If you have any photos or information about sightings please send them on to me or Norman.
One of the, “It’s Your Neighbourhood” priorities this year is that we plotters do as much as we can to encourage and protect our native bees.
It’s common knowledge that bees have been having a tough time of late. They are vital to the success of many of our crops and it makes sense for us to give them all the help we can. The Royal Horticultural Society has a nice wee video that shows in four minutes just how easy it is to lend our bees a helping hand.
RHS suggests these simple steps to help our honey, bumble and solitary bees:
- Plant nectar and pollen rich plants – those with open flowers that give easy bee access. Examples include Catmint, Lavender, Phacelia tanacetifolia and Sedum.
- Leave undisturbed some areas with naturally long grass, or at the base of bushes and hedges – these are the preferred, natural homes for bumble bees.
- Put up simple bee hotels for solitary bees e.g Mason Bees, in quiet spots around our plots and public spaces.
- Avoid spraying with pesticides as much as possible.
- Take up bee-keeping – if you have the necessary experience or get appropriate training.
On this last point, the City Council is reviewing its ban on bee-keeping on allotment sites and a new policy may be announced soon.
So, what could GFAA do to be bee friendlier?
Shiona caught this beauty on her Plot 71B this week.
Photo Credit: Shiona Wedderburn Plot 71A
Web research suggests it’s a Peacock Butterfly, but maybe others can confirm? A lovely visitor for sure.
Squadrons of stunning butterflies continue to circle our site. This was the latest I spotted visiting the Sedum on my plot.
Any other offerings caught on camera?
These two visited the Sedums on my plot today – along with dozens of bees, including some honey bees I am pleased to say. Can anyone tell me what they are? Are they both the same species?