It is unnaturally warm. Some parts of Ireland it was 17 degrees Celsius today, here in the west only 15, a temperature we would be happy with in May.
The mild weather has brought out the bumblebees. Queen bumblebees hibernate over the winter. In usual years we would see the first queens emerge in mid-March.
The first bees were spotted by my children on Sunday, and over the last couple of days we have seen some more. This was the first one I managed to get close up to photograph.
The spring flowering heather is a new addition to the garden planted to provide early food for the queens. They need both nectar and pollen after there long winter sleep. Heather, crocus , hellebore, dandelion and willow are all good early food sources.
With Climate Change resulting in much less predictable weather patterns, bumblebees are vulnerable. If the weather turns cold again the queens can only survive a couple of days without food.
We know when spring is coming when the frogs arrive back in the garden pond. Last year they were late (early March), but this year they are already back in force – first ones arrive earlier in the week.
There appears to be a little fewer than last year – about 100, compared to around 120 last year. They are not easy to count though so it is just an estimate!
From early childhood I have felt a connection with Nature. I am in my comfort zone when I am surrounded by Nature’s amazing greenery…..
Or the blue / greens of the ocean.
In my garden, I get a deep sense of pride and joy when the things I grow can, in turn, provide food for our beautiful bumblebees (and hoverflies)…
.. Or butterflies.
And when our unique Irish hares visit, it is an extra special day.
My wish is to stay always like this, living quietly in a corner of nature. Claude Monet
Inspired by this week’s Lens-Artist Photo Challenge – Nature