ophrys's picture

A good year for...

We hear constantly reports of it being a bad year for this, a bad year for that..., so I thought it worth reporting that on Knapweed, Ragwort, Water Mint...etc in the Vale of York, there are large numbers of bumblebees at the moment. As a result, I have never recorded so many Conopid flies, which parasitise the bees. Last week, on a small patch of Water Mint (about 6 metres long by 2 metres across) I recorded 30 Conops quadrifasciatus, 10 Conops flavipes, 1 Conops strigatus, 10 Sicus ferrugineus and 1 Physocephala rufipes...all at the same time. The number of bumblebees was equally impressive. An incredible sight!

Anyone else noticed the same? Or any other species thriving locally, this year?

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scarpermac's picture

other species thriving...

.. something I've commented on elsewhere but as you asked... I've seen a real proliferation of Silver Y Moths this year. I suppose as has been noted nationwide seems to have been a good year for butterflies too.

Feel free to look at my ongoing (hopefully improving) collection of pictures on Flickr:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/46256910@N00/

Leedseeker's picture

Just discovered conopid flies!

Well I know what a conopid fly is now thanks to Ian.

In my garden I enjoyed a great year for butterflies at long last having planted several Buddleja in recent years.

At first it seemed that Peacock butterflies had completely replaced the Small Tortoiseshell which used to be by far the commoner in days gone by.

However, I was pleased to see the Torts made a late comeback making it a good year for both.

ophrys's picture

Conopids

Enjoy...they are never very common,but worth looking out for. Good to hear of your butterflies...my Buddleia suddenly died off in the spring, so saw very few butterflies in the garden. I too saw quite a lot of late Small Tortoiseshells, though, and last weeks found 4 hibernating in a boiler room at my school (which was through two doors, so goodness knows how they got there!).

Ian
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My Flickr photos...

http://www.flickr.com/photos/52163027@N02/