Tuesday, 5 August 2014

Is it a hornet or is it a hoverfly?

Kate and I were down at the Royal Welsh Show last month, helping on the Wildlife Trust's stand. As usual we found it very enjoyable (if quite tiring!), engaging with lots of farmers and other wildlife enthusiasts. We stayed with Keith and Alison Noble in Brecon, Keith is a trustee of Brecknock WT.

Before we left for home in North Wales, they kindly took us to Llangorse Lake on a lovely sunny morning. The rest of this blog concerns a hornet and a hoverfly (Volucella zonaria) which looks like a hornet! Now I’ll let Keith tell the story.

"When we were leaving Llangorse we saw what I thought might be Volucella zonaria on a bramble bush but it proved to be a Hornet. As we came through the gate at home what looked like zonaria shot off the Escallonia. Later it reappeared and I got a photo. So here is the largest British hoverfly, a Hornet mimic whose grubs live as scavengers in wasp and Hornet nests. I first saw this locally at Penlan sports field on 22nd July two years ago. This year it appeared in my garden on Buddleia on 2nd and 5th July, and then on Escallonia iveyi on 23rd, 29th and today 31st July when I took this photo. This is a striking and distinctive insect which has been spreading north and west. I cannot believe it has specially chosen my garden – please could other people look out for it. Records should be sent to your Local Records Centre, which you will find on www.lrcwales.org.uk

Volucella zonaria

No comments:

Post a Comment