DORSET BEES, WILD HONEY & A RED SUNSET


GETTING TO GRIPS WITH A CANTERBURY BELLDorest Bees July 13 1

IF THE CAP FITS…Dorest Bees July 13 2

WHAT ARE THESE ‘HOVER-WASP’ GUYS CALLED?Dorest Bees July 13 3 Dorest Bees July 13I only noticed the gleaming gold thorax after downloading the photos

WILD BEES IN A WOODPECKER NEST BOX, ABACO, BAHAMASDelphi Wild Bees 2 Delphi Wild Bees 1

This year we had West Indian Woodpeckers using 2 nest boxes under the eaves.This successfully diverts them from drilling into the woodwork of the building. They raised two families this season, with 3 chicks fledging each time. Another nest box on a tree in the drive was not to their liking, and was quickly colonised by wild bees. The nearest small apiary – there are only two I know of on an island 120 miles long – is 15 miles away. These bees will never have known the luxury of a hive. I doubt they’d need or want it…

I photographed this sunset from our garden in Dorset a couple of evenings ago. In reality it was more dark pink than red, but by simply zooming directly at it the colour was altered dramatically. The second image is a simple crop of another photo taken seconds later, as the banding became clearer as the sun sunk below the horizon. It looks more like a planet. [NB No P/shop]
Dorset Sunset July 2 Dorset Sunset July 13

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WOODPECKER NEST BOXES: CORRECT & INCORRECT USES


I have left behind in the inner ‘burbs of London one family of woodpeckers, with fledglings almost ready to fly. I’ve immediately exchanged them for a family of West Indian Woodpeckers, at exactly the same stage, in the middle of nowhere. Here are a few comparative images. For some reason my ability to upload sound files of the raucous nestlings being fed is thwarted by a glitch, so I’ll add one in due course. 

TAKE ONE PAIR OF WEST INDIAN WOODPECKERSWIW nesting box 1WIW Nesting Box 4

GIVE THEM A COUPLE OF NEST BOXES TO PREVENT THEM DESTROYING THE ROOFWIW Nesting Box 2

SOONER OR LATER, THEY WILL PRODUCE A FAMILY – OR EVEN TWO IN A SEASONWIW Nesting Box 3

HOWEVER, AN UNUSED NESTBOX IS ATTRACTIVE TO WILD HONEY BEES TOO…WIW Nesting Box 6