I was lucky to spot this Orange Ladybird (Halyzia sedecimguttata) in our garden that I have used as the header image. I saw something small float up from near our fence to a leaf on our cherry tree. I got my camera and started looking at the leaves and saw this little thing crawling about on them. I don’t remember seeing one before.
Here’s two more photos of the ladybird. It looks like it has been painted with a thick coat of transparent varnish.
I had to do a bit of research for this photo. I have seen things like this before, several of them with little round holes in them. As I was reading I started to feel a bit squeamish so I had to get myself a drink of water. It is an Aphid that has had a parasites egg laid in it, probably by a wasp. Soon the parasite will cut a small hole and emerge. How nice!
These photos are all of things seen before but looked quite good on Day 64. The Blue Tits in the nest box have now fledged. There seemed to be a bit of noise from Magpies, Blackbirds and Blue Tits early in the morning but I saw three Blue Tits flitting about the Cherry tree. I couldn’t get a good look at them but it probably means that at least one of them was a fledgling, the other two could have been the parents, or more fledglings.
I suppose I could argue that the Emirates plane has not been spotted before and that it is a new thing for Day 64. 17:59 flying North West.
The header image for Day 63 is a photo to show that the cherries are starting to ripen.
The new thing for today is the Large Red Damselfly (Pyrrhosoma nymphula). I have seen one fleetingly over the last few days but on Day 63 I was ready. It didn’t stay long but it was there long enough on the Sage to get a photo of it. Damselflies usually have their wings along the body and this one is red, has black legs and dark spots at the ends of its wings so is a Large Red and has yellow markings so is female. This is assuming I am reading the British Dragonfly Society web page correctly.
The other two images I am including for Day 63 are a KLM flight high above taken with my long lens and a Bumble Bee on the Chives taken with my macro lens and ring flash.
We have had the Clematis covered in flowers; I think it is now the time for the Honeysuckle, they are starting to open now. The header image is of one of the first Honeysuckle flowers to open on the arbour in the back garden.
It was last year at the Photography Show in Birmingham that I bought my Macro lens that I have been using quite a bit in the garden. I have now taken delivery of a ring flash to use with it. The flash fits to the front of the lens and I have tried it out a few times and I am pleased with the results. One of the biggest changes that it allows is a smaller aperture which then gives a much greater depth of field. The Bumble Bee was taken using the flash and I think it is much clearer than a lot of similar posed shots I have taken.
The Honeysuckle was also taken using the ring flash and that has resulted in the leaved further back being a lot darker. It makes the flower contrast more with the background which has some benefits but it also makes it a bit “unreal”. Perhaps I need to play around with the flash power so that it isn’t too dominant.
This day was another blustery day. It started with a vibrant rainbow at about 6:15 but by the time I was decent enough to stand near a window with my camera it had faded. The one that got away. What a shame.
I ventured into the garden a couple of times to see if we had any Mint Moths. No! But I did notice the the new Hydrangea is really suffering with the wind. It is getting quite badly damaged as the gusts whip the new growth around.
Under the window at the front I did notice this tiny yellow flower though. I think it is one that I am supposed to have weeded out to allow the other plants to grow. Herb Bennet or Wood Avens. (Geum urbanum) It is recognised as a weed but I won’t hold that against it.
With only the 1 thing for the Day I am also using the photo as the header image.
I have not spent much time in the garden for Day 60, it was far too gusty. Though I did have a look around at the flowers that are growing. The header image is the New Dawn Rose that I have shown a couple of times now. I like it.
The Albertine Rose has also been shown before. It was tricky to get this photo of it from the top of the step ladder with it blowing in the wind.
This shows that the transplanted Geraniums are doing fine.
The Geranium (x cantabrigiense ‘Karmina’) is one of the new ones bought a couple of weeks ago and is new for this series. There are only a couple of its flowers open so far but there are plenty of buds. Getting the photos of the Geraniums was a bit easier though hard on the knees as I had to get down low. In the Karmina shot you can see the blue of the Forget Me Knots behind the plant.
The Blue Tits are busy in our garden. The header image shows one of them with a load of Green Fly in its beak.
This rather nice looking Rose is called New Dawn. There are plenty of buds on it so it is going to look great in a few days.
These are the two parents of the Blue Tits in the nest box. Is that a Meal Worm in its beak, if so then that’s the new thing for the Day.
I don’t know why one still looks rather smart and the other looks all frazzled. Is it the smart one that has been going to the fat balls in the garden to feed itself, smart in more ways than one? Feeding the chicks via the fat balls is not good for them, they should only be fed caterpillars and insects, and hopefully the parent followed that. Perhaps the smart one is the one that tended to stay in the box brooding and was being fed by the other, hardworking one? Or perhaps the frazzled one is the one that did the brooding and was not being fed adequately while the smart one was out getting lots of caterpillars for itself and the chicks? It would take some careful watching to find out. There seems to be plenty of food around. It doesn’t take them long, they leave the box and then are back with food in a couple of minutes