Monday, 9 June 2014

Flying Things

A storm is raging as I type this.  The Blue Tits, Great Tits, Sparrows, Blackbirds and Starlings have all flown for cover as hailstones like golf balls batter everything and thunder and lightning add their contribution to the storm.  All this weather is not good for the many small flying things which are to be found in the garden at the moment.  A close look at the Gooseberry bush revealed a 14-spot Ladybird (Propylea 14-punctata) trying to hide in the fold of a leaf.
Yesterday evening, while we were enjoying our dinner, two more flying things looked as if they wanted to join us.  This time, it was a couple of female Scorpion Flies (Panorpa communis) which settled on the patio doors.  The female is easily separated from the male by looking at the red 'tail'.  In the female, it is short and straight, while in the male, it curls up and back on itself, giving it the look of a scorpion's sting - hence the name.  A strange looking beastie!
Another odd-looking fly was to be found on our Pyracantha bush this morning.  This one turned out to be a Dance Fly (sometimes called Dagger Flies) and has the tongue-twister scientific name Rhamphomyia sulcata.
From one end of the scale to the other and another flying thing which was seen from our back garden yesterday afternoon.  A bit bigger this time, it was the world's largest passenger airliner, the Airbus A380. This one, operated by Emirates Airlines, was headed for Manchester airport having come from Dubai.
It's amazing what can be seen from the back garden!
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