We have had a few visitors this week in the garden. First the hawthorn shield bug. This I think is it’s final instar before it becomes a full adult.
Hawthorn shieldbug, final instar
The second visitor was a red-tailed bumblebee (Bombus lapidararius). I very occasionally get red-tailed bees in my garden, though I see them elsewhere in Mayo. For some reason they don’t seem to like my garden. This chap is a rather worn and weathered male.
Red-tailed bumblebee (Bombus lapidararius)
And yes the pumpkins are getting to pumpkin size. My children are already claiming theirs for Halloween! They have five to choose from. I have one decent sized squash and one little one.
We have plenty of autumn raspberries this year. If the weather stays mild we should be able to continue harvesting for a couple of weeks yet.
I just wanted to share this photo, I did mean to take the carder bee, but the hoverfly popped in too! Comfrey is still flowering and the bees love it.
Comfrey with bumble and hoverfly
I know I have shown this poppy before. It is always popular with pollinators. Here a hoverfly and a solitary bee are sharing the same flower. Pollinator season is nearly over so I have to get my fill in!
I have always liked shieldbugs. We don’t see them that often despite their colourful appearance, because they are also good at hiding. I am using my camera phone as my own camera is out of action, so not the best image!
They belong to the order Hemiptera, which is the same order as aphids, pond skaters and frog hoppers. They have a sucking mouthpath which they use to extract fluids from plants.