Tuesday 6 April 2010

A Good Omen?

Sunny and warming up fast in London today - at last! - and bang on cue comes my first Small Tortoiseshell of the year. It was flying, weakly and distractedly, at cornice level by a grand house on the corner of Kensington Square. I hope this will be a better year for the tortoiseshells - they've been suffering big falls in population in the Southeast lately, and no one knows quite why (various parasites are in the frame). I saw very few tortoiseshells last year, so I'll take this as a good omen...


  1. Still seen hardly anything up here, just 2 or 3 dejected looking bees.

    I was talking to a local farm chap this weekend who pointed out that 20 years ago, if you went out in your car on a summer's evening, it would invariably become a blackened graveyard of insect life. These days there are hardly any dead insects on the windscreen. Clean, yet worrying times.

  2. We had a big fat bee buzzing around our sunlit wheelie bins this arvo.

    Now then, Nige: do you expect your first sighting of tortoiseshells before or after your first sighting of convertibles with the lid down?

  3. Snap. Shortly after reading your post I was walking through a local churchyard and bingo there was another one flitting between the stones. You must have the knack of magicking them awake.

  4. Interesting - I must say I've seen loads of bees, both honey and bumble - a cheering and reassuring sight. This year, Dearieme, as usual the convertibles came first - the lid nearly always goes down before it's sensible. And another hopeful sign, Mark (I hope)...