Wednesday, 28 April 2010


As Malcolm and I left the house for our walk this morning, my attention was drawn to a very busy little creature in the grass of our front lawn. There are some very large Bumblebees about at the moment and this was no exception. A White-tailed Bumblebee (Bombus lucorum).
Among the first to appear in the Spring, this is a Queen (I think) and was busy digging in the soil looking for somewhere to lay eggs and start a new colony. Indeed it was so busy, it didn't even mind me thrusting the camera at it and taking a close-up shot or two.
I mentioned yesterday, the garlic mustard growing around the footpaths of Shipley Park. This morning, several of these plants were opening their flowers in the warm sunshine and it is from these, four petaled, cross-shaped flowers, that you can see their familial connections to the cabbages. It is also from the cross-shaped flowers that the whole family gets it's name 'Cruciferae'.
Part of the walk which we have just discovered, takes us along old railway lines and the industrial heritage of the area. Here, you can clearly see the site of the old West Hallam Colliery. Opened in 1889 and Closed in 1931, the ground is still pretty sterile and black with the residue of the pits.
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