Today Crafty Green Boyfriend and I joined the ladybird survey at Saughton Park. In the morning, Sarah from Edinburgh Natural History Society gave a presentation on ladybirds and where to look for them at this time of year (when they're starting to hibernate). In the afternoon we spread out around the park and looked for ladybirds and other insects. Here are photos of some of the species we found.
Starting with the adult ladybirds we saw:
two spot ladybird
this may be a ten spot ladybird, must confess I'm not sure, it doesn't seem to be a complete specimen! We also saw an adult orange ladybird but only Crafty Green Boyfriend got a photo of that and his camera is elsewhere at the moment!
We also saw this Harlequin ladybird larva
and this, which I think is an orange ladybird larva
There were plenty of other interesting invertebrates to see, including this hawthorn shield bug
this harvestman basking in the sun
this winter moth
this parasitic wasp
and this weird looking insect that neither of us could identify even remotely (so if you have any ideas on this, please say so in the comments!)
It was great to spend time looking for insects in the park and great to see so many people joining in!
Some great finds there, good they are still up and about
How fascinating. My girlfriend and I were actually talking about insects yesterday and how they never get the same attention as mammals (pandas, tigers, etc).
Greetings from London.
Neat to take part in this good work Juliet! I didn’t even know there are so many kinds of ladybugs (as we call them). Once we had an invasion of them around this time of year ...they were looking for a warm place to hibernate.). That wasn’t fun... but excep for that time, I love seeing them.
Hi Simon, yes we were impressed by how many invertebrates were around, the sunshine helped!
Cuban - very true, most people and most conservation organisations pay far more attention to mammals and birds than to other creatures, yet insects are so varied and so important
Sallie - there are 40 species of ladybirds in the UK alone! Some of them are tiny and virtually never seen
Not many lady birds and glow worms to be seen here now.
The ubiquitous fallen leaf sucker that makes as much noise as a jet on the tarmac is said to be responsible. Nobody uses a rake any more. Very sad.
Oh, CGP... my kind of expedition! Many congratulations on finding such a diversity of these creatures, especially since it is probably colder in your neck of the woods... even if the sun was shining at the time of your trawl! My ladybird houses (4) are all awaiting residents... though one was used by solitary bees in the summer.
I do think that insects deserve attention. I have recently joined Buglife and it's made me look far more closely ... fantastic and fascinating creatures of so many different varieties. I have heard that most of the insects in the world have not yet been scientifically described although I don't know if that is true.
Gwil - oh yes those leaf blowers are so destructive and so unneceesary....
Caroline - I hope you get lots of ladybirds in their houses. Lovely that one was used by solitary bees over the summer,
Jenny - insects definitely need more attention! There are so many fascinating insects and certainly some out there haven't been described and many are under-recorded.
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