Monday, 12 August 2013

Shield

A breezy day today, but still warm and with sunny spells breaking through, we set off around Shipley Lake to see if there were any ripe Blackberries to be picked.  On one of the berries, I found a small insect which needed some careful identification when we got back home.  I'm still not 100% certain, but I am fairly sure this is a nymph of the Birch Shield Bug (Elasmostethus interstinctus).  Shield Bugs have a complicated life cycle with the nymph passing through several stages before becoming full adults.  This is a later stage nymph.
On our way home again, with a small bag of Blackberries, we stopped to admire this large stand of Rosebay Willowherb (Chamerion - formerly Epilobium - angustifolium) swaying in the stiff breeze.  The pinkish-purple flower spikes stand out beautifully against the dark green of the summertime hedgerow.
Further along and we were reminded that autumn is on its way.  The Rowan Trees (Sorbus aucuparia) are fruiting now and their clusters of small, orange berries are shining through the green, looking like bowls of tiny oranges.
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