Tuesday, 13 May 2014

Go find your self some Nettles

Nettles are a wonderful plant for insects

Stinging Nettles support more than 40 kinds of insects.

This is one of my "Hot spots" for insects at the moment. A small plot of land just of the road behind the Bowling green club house. The lane behind the trees has small holdings,and this lane also divides the two parks, Kirk lane and Nunroyed. 

This patch is filled with Nettles, Bramble, Cow Parsley, Cleavers and Thistle.
Sycamore and Ash trees.

I check this spot daily when I take the dog for a walk, it has got large amounts of Ladybirds and harlequins 

First of all I took the top of a nettle home to see what was inside the curled up leaf....

It is a tiny caterpillar that I found the other day, we think with the help from JJ from
 The photographic nature blog
They are the caterpillar for the "Tortrix"  family of moths

To day I found 20+ insects just in this small area.

Banded snail

Harlequin Ladybird (spectabilis)
Soldier Beetle (Cantharidae decipiens)
What lovely colours, Hawthorn Shieldbug 
Cow Parsley
Harlequin Ladybirds everywhere 
Left and bottom right Dagger flies,top left Bramble Sawfly
Berberis Sawfly (Arge berberidis)
Nettle Tap moth ?

Cream-spot ladybird I think, they are sooo tiny and to day they were every were,all over the park.

 Green fly.. on the under side of the Sycamore leaf
which I managed to consume many while walking round the park....!

Green fly/ Aphid


Hover fly (Syrphus ribesii)

Wolf Spider


Nursery Web Spider (pisaura mirabilis)

And last of all for to day..

see you don't have to go far to find nature...
just find some Nettles.


  1. Nettles, they usually find me Amanda.{:))
    Great macro shots.

    1. Thanks Roy, nettles are good for Buterflies too, as a plant they have a dam good sting on them.

  2. We need to love insects more don't we? I know I do! Very interesting and made me think about the creatures (the little ones) that we take for granted and we don't even notice. Weird considering there are so many.

    1. Thank you, if more people took an interest they would be interested , even in a bunch of nettles. It's all down to good education, if insects were to die out getting a C in maths won't help..( little rant, son under pressure, exam time).

  3. Great post Amanda (apart from the spiders :-)). It looked like there was a lacewing under that sycamore with the greenfly? Hooray for nettles I say! I'm always championing them here. M thinks I am mad but now I can tell him your stat about the 40 insects species they support :-) Loved the cream spot ladybird shots- haven't seen one of those before. The close up was superb x

    1. Thanks CT, used to think the Lacewing was the "mother" of the green fly(Aphid). And the cream spot ladybird is so small once you saw one you saw them everywhere.,very good numbers.

  4. Great post Amanda...love the photos! Your unknown beetle is a soldier beetle-Cantharis decipiens and the one above is a sawfly but not sure which one ;-) Actually...pretty sure your St Marks fly is also a sawfly. Nettles are a superb spot for bugs and I fully intend every year having a tub of them in the garden, just never seem to get around to it.

    1. Thank you so much JJ for this information , I will go through the list you have given me and update the blog, did think the I had labeled the st marks fly wrong. Will carry on recording in this area for the rest of the year.

  5. Great photos Amanda, especially the ladybirds!!
    I found myself some nettles last week when I wasn't looking for them, when photographing wild garlic they stung me on the knee!!!!!
    V x

    1. Thank you, they do sting bad don't they, full of life and bite....:)

  6. Great collection of bugs you found there! Of your spiders, the top one is a wolf spider (don't know which one) and the one below is a Nursery Web Spider (Pisaura mirabilis). Also on the collaged pic of sawflies, the one that has prey, I think is a dance fly from the family Empididae - you can just see a very long ? (dunno what it is called!), well I guess it is the proboscis but it seems to not retract. Although I must admit it looks very like the sawflies but that's why insect ID is such a nightmare! :-)
    I am almost bugged out after this last week. Too many photos to sort through!

    1. Thanks Mandy, new you would help me out with the spiders, there is allot happening at the moment in "nature" finding it hard to keep up with all my finds !!!! and like you I have many photos to get through.
      Amanda xx

    2. Mandy, have made the image bigger( On insect blog) and you can defiantly see the flies "Proboscis" they are called "Dagger flies" because of this as well as dance fly. Dagger flies tend to have smaller antennae than sawflies, so thank you for your help.
      Amanda xx