Urban Jungle #3

Loads of these little chap(esse)s are bouncing all around the garden right now, despite the spawn taking a fair amount of punishment during the cold snap in early spring. Frogs like to eat slugs, which is great news for any gardener (but not so good for the slug).

Froglet

Urban Jungle #2

Common greenbottle (Lucilia sericata)

Flies. Maggots. Nasty.

Except they’re not (well, sort of). Without maggots, we’d literally be neck-deep in crap. And there are many flies that are pollinators. Flies like this common greenbottle (Lucilia sericata) that was feeding off of the forget-me-nots (Myosotis sylvatica) whilst flitting about the garden today.

Not only does this fly do a good job of spreading the flower love, its offspring have a penchant for rotting flesh and have been successfully used for treating really manky wounds.

OK, so it’s literally got shit breath (as have some humans I know) but perhaps you should think twice before going to swat one in future (if you’re the sort of Neandethal who does that sort of thing). A world without flies and maggots would be a far more disgusting place.

Urban Jungle #1

I’ve taken quite a few pics over time of the local flora and fauna (with the occasional not-so-local shot too), in large part thanks to the fact that the wildlife-friendly garden I’ve created either features or attracts ’em in. I like looking at other people’s pics of such things, so I thought why not share the ones of my own that I like? No reason whatsoever, so here’s the first.

This is a common whitethroat (Sylvia communis), who spent a fruitful half-hour this morning flitting around the slightly dishevelled post-winter garden (good bug-hunting territory). It’s a new birdy in the garden too, so another one to add to the tick list (of course I have a tick list, I’m a bloke).

The pic isn’t brilliant but, given that I had to take it through the kitchen window at maximum optical zoom, it’s not too shabby either.

Common whitethroat