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Sunday Quiz – Ladies and Gentlemen….The Answers!

Male gatekeeper (underside)

Dear Readers, can I have a big round of applause for Mike at Alittlebitoutoffocus who got 30 out of 30 for this week’s quiz. I didn’t think anyone would manage to get all of the answers correct, so very well done!

Dear Readers, here are the answers to Sunday’s quiz, which I think was a stinker if you also decided to try for the sex of the butterflies. The answers are below, and if you look at the photos, you’ll see that I’ve included a photo of the opposite sex, where relevant.

1) h) Clouded yellow (Colias croceus) – Male

2) i) Brimstone (Gonepteryx rhamni) – Female

3) j) Large white (Pieris brassicae) – Female

4)m) Small white (Pieris rapae) – Male

5) o) Orange tip (Anthocharis cardamines) – Female

6) g) Purple emperor (Apatura iris) – Male

7) f) Painted lady (Vanessa cardui) – Both sexes the same

8) k) Small tortoiseshell (Aglais urticae) – Both sexes the same

9) n) Small pearl-bordered fritillary (Boloria selene) – Female

10) e) Silver-washed fritillary (Argynnis paphia) – Female

11) c) Camberwell beauty (Nymphalis antiopa) – Both sexes the same

12) b) Brown hairstreak (Thecla betulae) – Female

13) a) Holly blue (Celastrina argiolus) – Female

14) l) Adonis blue (Polyommatus bellargus) – Male

15) d) Gatekeeper (Pyronia tithonus) – Male

Photo One by By Hectonichus - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=56275091

1) h) Clouded yellow (Colias croceus) – male

Photo 1)ii by Colin Knight from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=15605

1) ii Clouded yellow – female

Photo 2 from https://butterfly-conservation.org/butterflies/brimstone

2) i) Brimstone (Gonepteryx rhamni) – female

Photo 2 ii) by Neil Hulme from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=22501

2) ii – Brimstone male

Photo Three by By I, S Sepp, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=2439462

3) j) Large white (Pieris brassicae) – female

Photo 3 ii) by Dave Miller from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=14552

3) ii Large white – male

Photo Four by Zeynel Cebeci / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)

4)m) Small white (Pieris rapae) – male

Photo 4 ii) by Vince Massimo from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=14119

4) ii Small white – female

Photo Five by Jessica Towne / CC0

5) o) Orange tip (Anthocharis cardamines) – female

Photo 5) ii) by Mike Skittrall from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=20406

5) ii – Orange tip – male

Photo Six by I, Rosenzweig / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)

6) g) Purple emperor (Apatura iris) – male

Photo Six ii) by Mark Colvin from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=15226

6) ii Purple emperor – female

Photo Seven by Jean-Pol GRANDMONT / CC BY (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)

7) f) Painted lady (Vanessa cardui) – both sexes the same

Photo Eight by By Jörg Hempel, CC BY-SA 3.0 de, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=27756983

8) k) Small tortoiseshell (Aglais urticae) – both sexes the same

Photo Nine by Neil Hulme, from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=23493

9) n) Small pearl-bordered fritillary (Boloria selene) – female

Photo 9) ii by Neil Hulme from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=24983

9) ii – small pearl-bordered fritillary – male

Photo Ten by Pauline Richards, from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=15133

10) e) Silver-washed fritillary (Argynnis paphia) – Female

Photo 10 ii) by Pauline Richards from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=15134

10) ii – Silver-washed fritillary – male

Photo Eleven by Paul Olive, from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=4714

11)c) Camberwell beauty (Nymphalis antiopa) – both sexes the same

Photo Twelve by Neil Hulme from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=15616

12)b) Brown hairstreak (Thecla betulae) Female

Photo 12)ii by Pauline Richards from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=15580

12) ii – Brown hairstreak – male

Photo Thirteen by Neil Freeman from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=22480

13)a) Holly blue (Celastrina argiolus) – Female

Photo 13)ii by Nick Ballard from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=14474

13)ii- Holly blue male

Photo Fourteen by Neil Hulme from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=16082

14) l) Adonis blue (Polyommatus bellargus) – male

Photo 14 ii) by Neil Hulme from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=14001

14) ii) Adonis blue female

Photo Fifteen by Neil Freeman from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=13841

15)d) Gatekeeper (Pyronia tithonus) – male

Photo Fifteen ii) by Mark Colvin, from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=11232

15)ii – Gatekeeper, female

Photo Credits

Photo 1 by By Hectonichus – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=56275091

Photo 1)ii by Colin Knight from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=15605

Photo 2 from https://butterfly-conservation.org/butterflies/brimstone

Photo 2 ii) by Neil Hulme from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=22501

Photo Three by By I, S Sepp, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=2439462

Photo 3 ii) by Dave Miller from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=14552

Photo Four by Zeynel Cebeci / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)

Photo 4 ii) by Vince Massimo from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=14119

 

A Sunday Walk in Coldfall Wood

Dear Readers, since the lockdown Coldfall Wood and the playing fields next door have become the centre of outdoor activity for what feels like half of North London. Walkers, runners, picnickers, families with children, dog-walkers, berry-harvesters, casual drinkers, kite-fliers, cyclists, footballers, softball players, den-makers and skateboarders have all trooped through the woods. Some have observed social distancing, some have not. Some have left prodigious quantities of litter, other people have helped to clean it up. Some have moved slowly, noticing the clouds and the changes in the season, others have raced through, huffing and puffing, and some have done both at different times. Some have smiled shyly, some have bellowed into their phones. In short, all of human life has been observed during this past four months when I have walked here in the morning almost every day. Even on a busy morning you can find a  quiet spot, such as this lane next to the allotments.

One of the smaller trees has been pulled down by the ivy, and it is becoming a limbo-dance to get under it.

You never know what you’ll hear from the allotments – sometimes there’s the distant sound of a cockerel crowing, but today there was the roar of power tools. It didn’t completely drown out the yaffle of a green woodpecker, though, and there was an ardent woodpigeon in the trees cooing to his loved one.

We walk out of the lane and head towards the playing fields. There is always the brightness ahead, the sudden sense of the world opening out.

Running towards the light

The crows seem to be socially-distancing, but I imagine they are each patrolling their own small area looking for worms.

Elsewhere, autumn is well on the way.

Blackberries

Thistledown

Sycamore ‘keys’

There are a few common red soldier beetles (Rhagonycha fulva) about on the yarrow, but their heyday is when the hogweed is out – you can sometimes see dozens on a single flower head, and indeed some wag has nicknamed them the ‘hogweed bonking beetle’. The adults eat aphids and the larvae eat slugs and snails, so this is definitely an insect that you want to encourage in your garden.

And while this big critter looks like a bee, it is in fact a bee-mimicking fly, possibly a drone fly.

A woodpigeon is making the most of the elderberries – these birds really do prefer wild food to anything humans can offer, as anyone who has seen them fighting over ivy berries will attest.

Elderberries.

The Japanese knotweed is still doing extremely well I notice.

There is an unmistakable whiff of autumn in the air. Everything is in a hurry to spread its seeds before the nights draw in.

Greater knapweed seedheads

Seeds on my mysterious beet plants

Fennel seedheads

 

Am I the only one who loves the burdock? Actually no, the bees are quite keen as well….

Some things are still in flower, like the lady’s bedstraw.

And the spear thistle is still popular…

And then, as we reach the wood again, the coolness and the darkness are welcome.

A lone rowan tree by the stream

When I listen to the sounds of people in the wood, I wonder if it has been so intensely used at any time in the last few hundred years. Once upon a time it was coppiced every year, with the hornbeams being cut right back and the wood taken by ordinary folk to make charcoal or as tinder. What a social event that must have been! Not to mention when hunting parties rode through, and what a bunch of hooligans I imagine they were. It gives me some comfort that the woods are resilient, and have known all kinds of usage in the years that they’ve been in existence. The woods are a nature reserve but they are also a vital public space, used by people with no gardens and no access to the outside. Getting the balance between welcoming people and protecting the vulnerable parts of the wood right will be essential, because, as I know from my time volunteering in other open spaces, people have to feel that the woods belong to them too for them to care about protecting them. Let’s hope that some of the people who have never ventured into Coldfall Wood until the lockdown will grow to love it as much as I do.

Little stream in Coldfall Wood

Sunday Quiz – Ladies and Gentlemen….

Dear Readers, I hope that you can stand yet another insect-related quiz (the last one for a few weeks, I promise!) This week, I thought I would ask you not only to identify the species of the butterflies in the photos below, but what sex they are – I will give one mark for the species, and one for the sex. If the sexes are identical, you can say ‘both’. I suspect this is pretty tricky (though every week I am amazed), so good luck!

So, if you think the butterfly in photo 1 is a holly blue, your answer is 1) a). If you want to hazard an answer as to the sex, it will be 1) a) m (male), 1) a) f (female) or 1) a) b) (sexes identical).

a) Holly blue (Celastrina argiolus)

b) Brown hairstreak (Thecla betulae)

c) Camberwell beauty (Nymphalis antiopa)

d) Gatekeeper (Pyronia tithonus)

e) Silver-washed fritillary (Argynnis paphia)

f) Painted lady (Vanessa cardui)

g) Purple emperor (Apatura iris)

h) Clouded yellow (Colias croceus)

i) Brimstone (Gonepteryx rhamni)

j) Large white (Pieris brassicae)

k) Small tortoiseshell (Aglais urticae)

l) Adonis blue (Polyommatus bellargus)

m) Small white (Pieris rapae)

n) Small pearl-bordered fritillary (Boloria selene)

o) Orange tip (Anthocharis cardamines)

Photo One by By Hectonichus - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=56275091

1)

Photo Two from https://butterfly-conservation.org/butterflies/brimstone

2)

Photo Three by By I, S Sepp, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=2439462

3)

Photo Four by Zeynel Cebeci / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)

4)

Photo Five by Jessica Towne / CC0

5)

Photo Six by I, Rosenzweig / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)

6)

7)

Photo Eight by By Jörg Hempel, CC BY-SA 3.0 de, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=27756983

8)

Photo Nine by Neil Hulme, from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=23493

9)

Photo Ten by Pauline Richards, from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=15133

10)

Photo Eleven by Paul Olive, from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=4714

11)

Photo Twelve by Neil Hulme from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=15616

12)

Photo Thirteen by Neil Freeman from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=22480

13)

Photo Fourteen by Neil Hulme from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=16082

14)

Photo Fifteen by Neil Freeman from https://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/album_photo.php?id=13841

15)

The Big Butterfly Count

Gatekeeper (Pyronia tithonus)

Dear Readers, the temperature is due to get into the 90’s today, and so I decided it was a good morning to do the Big Butterfly Count for Butterfly Conservation. This year, you can do as many counts as you like, and so I thought I’d maybe do a few between now and the 9th August when it finishes. Sadly the buddleia at the front has pretty much gone over, but the hemp agrimony at the back  is still pulling them in. As usual, as soon as I was all set up with my app loaded and my chart at the ready, all the butterflies went on strike. Where were the clouds of holly blues from yesterday? Where were the peacocks and the red admirals? Well, actually I suspected that the big colourful butterflies were all looking for buddleia elsewhere, because in spite of the popularity of my hemp agrimony with all the little butterflies and bees, the big ones don’t seem to like it.

Holly blue (Celastrina argiolus). On strike today.

However, there was one moment of great excitement. There was a flash of deep copper-orange, and this amazing moth landed in the lilac.

Jersey tiger (Euplagia quadripunctaria)

I love the delta wings (which remind me of my favourite V-bomber, the Vulcan), and the absolute nonchalance with which it flies – presumably the orange colour is a warning to birds that it is unpleasant to eat.

Photo One by By AJC1 from UK - Jersey Tiger Moth, CC BY-SA 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=64517234

Photo One

This is actually the second or third Jersey tiger that I’ve seen in the garden during the last few days, and I am wondering if my huge stands of hemp agrimony are actually being used by the caterpillars. How exciting would that be! As the name suggests, the Jersey tiger came originally from the Channel Islands, and the first time I saw one it was in parents’ Dorset garden. A friend saw one in North London earlier this year, and now they seem to be everywhere. The caterpillars can apparently be spotted from September onwards, and the tiny caterpillars overwinter amongst their foodplants, so maybe I won’t cut back my plants this year just in case. They also like all kinds of ‘weeds’, such as nettles, ground ivy and dandelion, so keep an eye open, London folks!

Photo Two from https://butterfly-conservation.org/moths/jersey-tiger

Jersey tiger caterpillar (Photo Two)

Now, here’s a question for you. When you’re thinking about the weather, do you think in Centigrade or Fahrenheit? All the ‘young’ people in my team at work think it’s hilarious when I tell them that ‘it’s going to be in the 90’s on Monday’ and ask me what the ‘real temperature’ is. Hah!  Is it just an age thing? I’m old enough to remember pre-decimalisation (which was in 1971) but I don’t remember ever being told that we had to think in Centigrade. Or maybe it just passed me by. Anyway, it is a constant reminder that I am about 25 years older than the next oldest person in my team (that and not being eager to return to the office because, pandemic).

Anyhow, I also wanted to give you a heads-up about my latest garden experiment. Whenever I go to tropical butterfly houses, I see fermenting bananas left about, and the butterflies seem to love them. So, I have stuck an ageing banana on the bird table (opened of course) and I shall being keep an eye open to see who turns up. I suspect that it might be more attractive to moths because of their well-developed sense of smell, and I’m hoping that wasps are still concentrating on protein rather than sugar at the moment, otherwise things could get very interesting. I shall keep you posted, readers, but in the meantime, keep your fingers crossed for my next butterfly count – let’s hope that I find more than the three large whites and five gatekeepers that I saw this time.

Photo Three from https://www.aviano.af.mil/Site-Pages/Wyvern-Warriors/Display/Article/282410/enter-the-enchanting-world-of-butterflies/

Butterflies on banana (Photo Three)

Photo Credits

Photo One By AJC1 from UK – Jersey Tiger Moth, CC BY-SA 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=64517234

Photo Two from https://butterfly-conservation.org/moths/jersey-tiger

Photo Three from https://www.aviano.af.mil/Site-Pages/Wyvern-Warriors/Display/Article/282410/enter-the-enchanting-world-of-butterflies/

Friday Book – The Hidden Life of the Fox by Adele Brand

Dear Readers, if you’ve been following this blog for a while you’ll know that I’m a confirmed foxophile (not sure if that’s a word) so when my friend A lent me this book I couldn’t wait to dive in. My previous go-to work on foxes was ‘Fox Watching – In the Shadow of the Fox’ by Martin Hemmington, who had been rescuing and rehabilitating foxes in the UK for over 25 years, and who was the founder of the National Fox Welfare Society (NFWS). What I loved about the latter book was the author’s close observation of foxes, both in the wild and when under his care, and his obvious deep passion and empathy for them. ‘Fox Watching’ was going to be a hard act to follow.

‘The Hidden World of the Fox‘ ranges more widely. Brand is a mammal ecologist, and has led research in five countries. She brings a scientist’s eye to many fox controversies, and there were many things here that I didn’t know. She roundly debunks many of the ideas about fox deterrence, for example: why would male urine frighten an urban fox when they spend all their days hanging around our streets? And why would lion dung from the zoo frighten a fox when, in many countries, foxes rely on top predators to kill prey too big for them to manage, so that they can scavenge the remains later? You might think that lion dung would attract foxes rather than deter them.

Interestingly, Brand points out that the one thing that might work, if consistently applied, is one of the sprays such as Scoot which disguise the scents that foxes use to mark their territories. A fox without a territory is in constant danger of attack by other foxes, and can never rest, so this might persuade the animal to move on.

Quite why you’d want them to move on is a mystery to me, however.

A young vixen in St Pancras and Islington cemetery. My favourite British wild mammal.

Brand also explores the ‘human/fox interface’. We have, of course, impinged on the fox’s territory, rather than the other way round, and it’s interesting to see how intolerant we are of the mess that foxes undoubtedly create if rubbish is not suitably binned. In a study that Brand conducted in London, over 33% of Londoners apparently said that they disliked foxes, largely because of their scats, the way they could scatter the contents of a dustbin bag over half the street, and the way that they dug up garden plants, stole anything left in the garden and murdered inadequately-housed rabbits. A surprising number of people were also afraid that the foxes would kill their cats and mutilate their children. I am being a bit flippant here: I have had a dog-fox visit who was so tame that he would cheerfully have come into the house, and there is one case of twin infants being bitten by a fox who entered the room that they were sleeping in.

Dog Fox in my garden last year.

Brand has very clear guidelines on interactions with foxes, and with people who are afraid of foxes, or dislike them:

  • Do not hand-feed them, or allow them to come into the house
  • If you are going to put a small amount of food out for them, put it a distance from the entrance to the property
  • Do not deny that foxes can cause problems, but make people aware of the efficacy of products such as Scoot
  • Do not assume that all fox bite stories are either untrue or the fault of the people bitten

A reason for overfriendliness that I don’t remember Brand writing about (though I might have missed it as the book has no index), is toxoplasmosis: this parasite is known for making its hosts reckless, and certainly Martin Hemmington thinks that it might be responsible for all kinds of peculiar behaviour. In rats, toxoplasmosis has been shown to make the animal less afraid of cats (the parasite is passed on in the droppings of carnivores). There was even a study that showed that humans with toxoplasmosis (occasionally picked up from cleaning out the cat litter tray) are more likely to be involved in road accidents, both as pedestrians and as drivers. It’s easy to imagine that an infected fox might wander into a basement floor through an open door and, maybe smelling the milk on an infant’s breath, start to look for the source.

Young fox

Another point where Brand and Hemmington differ is on the whole subject of treating mange with homeopathy (often Psorinum 30c). Hemmington’s charity actually provides free homeopathic treatment for foxes with mild mange: you might remember that I spent some time treating a vixen with mange in our local cemetery by lacing jam sandwiches with homeopathic drops.

Brand points out that

‘Psorinum 30c has become a major feature of many charities’ anti-mange efforts. It is much easier to obtain than Ivermection because a vet does not need to prescribe it. Unfortunately, that is because homeopathic treatments are medically inert: they are a discredited invention from the eighteenth century that has become a multi-million-pound industry‘.

She does, however, point out one possible beneficial side-effect:

It is possible that homeopathy can have an unintended benefit; by putting out regular food with the dose, a home owner may support the fox’s general health and assist its fight against the disease‘.

She also points out that:

Once mange progresses beyond the early stages, many foxes suffer a terminal deterioration of their symptoms. But in others, the condition reverses. The bare blotchy skin patches and lesions remain, but the mites die, and the fox gradually heals‘.

I had little faith that using Psorinum 30c would do any good, being something of a homeopathy sceptic: I know that acupuncture, herbalism, reflexology and a host of other alternative medicine techniques can have positive value, but the scientist in me baulks at homeopathy. However, the little vixen that I was treating did improve over the course of the summer, and whether it was the jam sandwiches or the homeopathic medicine, that was a good result. The one great thing about homeopathy is that it is guaranteed, at the very least, to do no harm, unlike the many medicines given to humans and animals that have long-lasting and sometimes serious side effects.

The fox I was treating in March 2016

So, I enjoyed Brand’s book – she has an obvious objectivity and a scientific approach, and she casts her net rather wider than Hemmington does in his book. But I didn’t love it. The focus seems to be more on the relationship between humans and foxes, particularly in urban areas, rather than the foxes themselves. I found the lack of an index really frustrating. The book seems to fall into the hinterland between a scientific study and a personal account, and so, for me, it doesn’t fulfill the promise of either approach. But any work that seeks to help us understand our wild neighbours and their habits is to be warmly welcomed. I look forward to seeing what Brand does going forward. Foxes need all the friends they can get.

The dog fox from the cemetery

The vixen waiting patiently for her dinner

A New(ish) Cat and the Joy of Shieldbugs

Dear Readers, this magnificent black cat has been visiting the garden ever since lockdown started. He wanders down the side entrance, and I can always tell that he’s coming because the blue tits and the robins start their chorus of chinking and tsicking. He gets to the corner and has a quick look to see if anyone is there. If I’m having my coffee, he proceeds a little more carefully .  If I think he’s looking too predatory I will stand up abruptly and that’s enough to send him elsewhere for half an hour. If he looks relaxed, I’ll watch him as he strolls around ‘his’ domain and plonks himself down in the sun.

Photo through the kitchen window (not cleaned since lockdown, sorry!)

I love cats, and yet at certain times of the year I will discourage them from the garden whenever I see one (apart from Bailey of course. I think a bird could land on his back and he’d pay no attention). When the new fledglings first appear, I am hypervigilant. If there’s been a particularly cold snap and the birds are too hungry to take their usual care I will be keeping an eye open for hidden felines (though it’s much harder for them to hide when there isn’t so much foliage). I love cats, but I have no illusions about the damage they do.

I do think that prey animals know whether a cat is in hunting mode or not, though. My Mum’s enormous fat old cat, Snuggles, could lay on the patio surrounded by sparrows and they would ignore him. When I was in India I noticed that a tiger in plain view was not seen as a problem while everyone could see it and keep their distance. There sometimes seems to be an uneasy truce between predator and prey, a fine balance that it only takes a twitch of the tail or a tightening of concentration to disturb. There are so many dramas played out every day in an average garden, and lockdown has given me the chance to tune in to some of them.

What a beautiful, beautiful cat though. It is a pleasure to watch him.

And now, for something completely different. I was asked to identify some insects earlier this week by Mrs K over at Old Yarns and Woolly Thoughts She had found some unusual creatures under one of her strawberry leaves and wondered what they were.

First instar Green Shieldbugs (Palomena prasina) (Thanks to Mrs K for the photo)

I recognised them as shieldbugs, and with the help of the Insects and Other Invertebrates of Britain and Europe Facebook group we were able to identify the species – green shieldbug (Palomena prasina). I had one of these in my kitchen a few years ago – when they grow up they are very fine critters indeed.

Shieldbugs are ‘true’ bugs (I know in the US all insects are often known as bugs). A true bug feeds on the juices of plants or animals, and has specially adapted mouthparts to enable it to puncture its ‘victim’. It’s a varied family, with aphids and bedbugs being the villains of the piece, while pond skaters and water boatmen are all over the pond during the summer. I have written about froghoppers and their cuckoo-spit several times, but had no idea that we have a cicada species that lives in the New Forest.

Shieldbugs are named for the shape of their carapaces, but also have the less flattering name of ‘stinkbug’ – if handled they can produce a noisome chemical that is described, in Bugs Britannica by Peter Marren and Richard Mabey, as smelling like ‘rancid marzipan or mouldy almonds’. As anyone who watches Miss Marple or Hercule Poirot knows, the smell of bitter almonds is never a good sign, as it usually indicates cyanide. These bugs are probably poisonous little mouthfuls,

The green shieldbug, like all shieldbugs, goes through a wide variety of forms before it reaches adulthood – each one is known as an ‘instar’, and the shieldbug moults up to half a dozen times after it hatches. The mother green shieldbug lays three or four batches of eggs, each in a hexagonal shape, as you can see from Mrs K’s photograph above. Once the youngsters hatch, they stick together for protection – they produce what’s known as an aggregation pheromone, a chemical which encourages them to stay close. However, if danger does appear they instantly produce a dispersion pheromone, which causes them to run away from one another.

Photo One from https://www.britishbugs.org.uk/heteroptera/idcards/life_stages.html

The different instars of the green shieldbug (Photo One)

The green shieldbug does feed on blackberries, raspberries and green beans, but the insects are rarely found in large numbers, and, to my mind at least, are best admired and left alone. There is a new kid on the block, the southern green shieldbug (Nezara viridula), who turned up in Kings Cross in London at Camley Street Nature Reserve in 2003, and there are some concerns that this little chap might be more voracious than the native species. So far the species hasn’t been spotted further north than Barnet, but it’s probably worth keeping an eye open for.

Photo Two by Rison Thumboor from Thrissur, India / CC BY (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)

Southern green shieldbug nymphs (Photo Two)

The adult southern green shieldbug has clear wings, as compared with the green shieldbug (in my photo of the insect on my kitchen worktop above, you can see that it has amber-coloured wings), but it also has three white spots on the thorax which are pretty much diagnostic.

Photo Three by Katya from Moscow, Russia / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)

Adult southern green shieldbug (Nezara viridula) (Photo Three)

I can’t leave the subject of shieldbugs without mentioning the parent bug (Elasmucha grisea). While most insects lay their eggs and do a runner, the female parent bug crouches over her brood of eggs for two to three weeks – the number of eggs laid seems to depend on the body -size of the female. She protects them by making threatening movements towards any interlopers and, if all else fails, she will produce the almondy defensive chemicals mentioned above.

When the eggs hatch, the nymphs stay close together and feed on their eggshells – if one of them strays, the female reaches out with her antenna and guides them back to the shelter of her body. Once they start moving around to feed, the female stays in close attendance, keeping them together. The youngsters hatch asynchronously, and as the larger nymphs move away from the female they join up with others to form mixed groups – it’s been shown that these groups have a much better survival rate than individuals.

Finally, and most amazingly, adult females will sometimes join up and jointly guard all of their eggs and nymphs, with no favour shown to their own youngsters. Pairs of females seem to have the highest nymph survival rate of all. Teamwork in bugs! Who knew. Every single day I am astonished by what I discover for this blog.

Photo Four by By Bj.schoenmakers - Own work, CC0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=40664722

Parent bugs (Elasmucha grisea) joint guarding eggs (Photo Four)

Photo Five by By Aiwok - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=15551532

Single parent bug guarding eggs (Photo Five)

Well, I don’t know about you but shieldbugs have really gotten my attention now. I’m not the first person either: in Bugs Britannica, Peter Marren describes a book called ‘The Shieldbugs of Surrey‘, which gives helpful tips on keeping shieldbugs in captivity (not that I’m advocating such a thing of course). I find this utterly charming, probably because it’s just the kind of thing that I might have written when I was bug-smitten as a youngster.

‘If a fat bug refuses to eat, then it is probably close to a moult. If a thin bug does not eat, then there’s something wrong with the food….if a bug is running around wildly, then it may be in need of a drink….Sometimes a bug may be found lying on its back and waving its legs in the air. This is nothing to worry about….the creature may just be stuck’.

Photo Six by Line Sabroe from Denmark / CC BY (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)

Green shieldbug eggs just before hatching. Look at all the little faces! (Photo Six)

Photo Credits

Photo One from https://www.britishbugs.org.uk/heteroptera/idcards/life_stages.html

Photo Two by Rison Thumboor from Thrissur, India / CC BY (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)

Photo Three by Katya from Moscow, Russia / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)

Photo Four by By Bj.schoenmakers – Own work, CC0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=40664722

Photo Five by By Aiwok – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=15551532

Photo Six by Line Sabroe from Denmark / CC BY (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)

Wednesday Weed – Beetroot

Beetroot found next to Muswell Hill Playing Fields (see this post)

Dear Readers, as a child I had a horror of the beetroot cubes that were served as part of our school dinners. There was something about the texture of the vegetable, the sharpness of the vinegar, the lurid-pink ‘juice’ that contaminated everything else that made me feel slightly nauseous. We were meant to eat everything on the plate (which contributed to my brother’s life-long hatred of steak and kidney pudding)  but one day I just couldn’t, so I told the dinnerladies that, with some regret, I would have to decline the beetroot because I was allergic to it.

I remember seeing them look at one another with some puzzlement, because allergies were not much discussed in 1968. Furthermore, ‘allergy’ was not a word that an eight year-old was supposed to know.

I got off on that occasion, and I seem to remember that the point wasn’t pushed subsequently. The sensible thing to do would have been to ask Mum if I was actually allergic, but I don’t think the school ever did.

These days I am much more inclined towards beetroot, not least because it comes in so many forms, and because, roasted or raw, it is actually quite delicious.

Photo One by By © Jörgens.mi, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=57857779

Chioggia beetroot. Look at the candy stripes! (Photo one)

Photo Two by By © Jörgens.mi, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=57857829

Yellow beetroot (Photo Two)

All beetroots descend originally from sea beet (Beta vulgaris ssp maritima) which is found all over the coastal areas of the UK and Ireland (though it is notably absent from the more northern parts of Ireland). All of the cultivated beet varieties descend from this one humble salt-marsh plant: not just our salad beetroot, but sugar beet (which produces the vast majority of the sugar that we eat) and also, to my surprise, chard (where we ignore the root and eat the leaves and stem instead). As you might expect from a plant that grows in a marine environment, most varieties of beet are tolerant of salty soils. They prefer cooler temperatures, though chard is said to be happier at a higher temperature than the root vegetable varieties.

Photo Three by Krzysztof Ziarnek, Kenraiz / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)

Sea Beet (Beta vulgaris ssp maritima) (Photo Three)

Beetroot is really one of ‘the’ cold climate crops – it has helped us to get through many winters, and it’s no surprise that eastern Europe has produced some of the most interesting recipes. Bortscht is a case in point – this beetroot soup has many variations (not all of which contain beetroot incidentally). Apparently, it would originally have been made with hogweed (Heracleum sphondylium), and it’s the Russian word for this plant (borsch) which gives it its name (although the more usual English spelling, borscht, comes straight from Yiddish). It can be served hot or cold, with potatoes or smetana (a type of sour cream), with meat or fish or as a purely vegetarian soup. It forms part of the ritual traditions of the Roman Catholic, Greek Orthodox, Greek Catholic and Jewish faiths, and the original ‘borscht’ recipe is claimed by several cultures.

Photo Four by By Brücke-Osteuropa - Own work, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=7284301

Russian borscht (Photo Four)

Photo Five by By uk:Користувач:Kagor - uk:Файл:Borsch- 020.jpg, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=19218448

Ukrainian borscht (Photo Five)

Photo Six by By Michał Lech - https://pixabay.com/pl/jedzenie-potrwawa-catering-78222/ archive copy, CC0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=45817399

Polish Christmas Eve borscht with mushroom dumplings (Photo Six)

However, these soups all still seem to have rather too much obvious beetroot in them for my taste, and so my preferred method of getting some of the red stuff into my diet is by making a beetroot and chocolate cake, for which there are multiple recipes on the web (though I have a great fondness for the Nigel Slater recipe here). I have found that many vegetables disappear into cake, providing moistness and a streak of colour but nothing more assertive – carrots are an obvious choice, but courgette and squash have also worked very nicely for me. Do not, under any circumstances, try it with swede though. The results are like something that Satan might serve up at afternoon tea.

Photo Seven from https://www.bbc.co.uk/food/recipes/beetroot_chocolate_cake_82388

Chocolate beetroot cake (Photo Seven)

Beetroot also has a long history of medicinal use (though its habit of turning urine red can cause considerable alarm to the unprepared – there is actually a word for this, beeturia). It has been used as a treatment for constipation since Roman times, and Apicius gave no less than five recipes for beetroot soups to be used as a laxative. Tests on beetroot have shown that it can have an positive effect on the reduction of  hypertension.

In the UK, according to the site Plant Lore, beetroot wine was used as a cure for asthma, chilblains, earache and, apparently, snake bites.

The intense red colour of beetroot was used historically to colour wine, and it is still used as a food-colouring for things like tomato paste and breakfast cereal.

Flowers on ‘my’ beet plant

Beetroot is one of those vegetables (like brussel sprouts) that polarises people – you are either a fan or a hater, it seems. But would our attitudes change if we remembered that beetroot has a reputation as an aphrodisiac? The ancient Greeks believed that Aphrodite, goddess of love, ate beetroots to make herself more beautiful. The Romans believed that eating beets and drinking beetroot juice could enhance sexual performance,  and there were frescoes of beets in the Lupernar brothel in Pompeii (though all the images of the frescoes that I can find are much too X-rated for these august pages). English folklore has it that if a man and a woman eat from the same beetroot, they will fall in love. Beetroot juice has also been used as a hair dye and as a cosmetic to brighten up pale cheeks and provide a substitute for lipstick.

The actual harvesting of beetroot has long been a heavy, back-breaking job, however, and I like this painting by Leon Wyczółkowski , one of the leading Realist painters of the interwar period in Poland. You can almost smell the soil and the wood smoke, and feel the cold in your chapped hands.

Beet Harvest II by Leon Wyczółkowski (Public domain)

And finally, a poem. I love this vignette by Pauline Prior-Pitt, who moved from Hull to North Uist in 1997 and who started writing poems in her thirties. I feel that it sums up the way that we can’t judge people by appearances, and how exchanges are often more complex than they appear.

Meeting at the Mobile Library Van by Pauline Pitt-Prior

In your muddy coat, you stroll up from your croft;
choose two biographies.

And I’m not sure you’ll want
to look at poetry; am surprised

when the pirate behind your fiery eyes
lets me help you choose a Douglas Dunn
to add to your collection.

Quick as a dog you’re down at the loch side,
showing me your veg patch,
hidden from storms inside peat stacked walls.

“Bloody deer have eaten all my greens.”

You ask if I like beetroot, tug up
two huge globes covered in mud.
Each one must weigh at least a pound.

And I’ve been waiting for this windy day
to open windows wide,

chopping the beets with onions and Bramleys
adding sugar, spice, and vinegar
and slowly simmering them together.

And I’m thinking, six jars of chutney
are more than a fair exchange

for the poetry I chose for you to relish.

Photo Eight by Meal Makeover Moms at https://www.flickr.com/photos/34168666@N07/14438107217/

Beetroot pickles (Photo Eight)

Photo Credits

Photo One by By © Jörgens.mi, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=57857779

Photo Two by By © Jörgens.mi, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=57857829

Photo Three by Krzysztof Ziarnek, Kenraiz / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)

Photo Four by By Brücke-Osteuropa – Own work, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=7284301

Photo Five by By uk:Користувач:Kagor – uk:Файл:Borsch- 020.jpg, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=19218448

Photo Six by By Michał Lech – https://pixabay.com/pl/jedzenie-potrwawa-catering-78222/ archive copy, CC0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=45817399

Photo Seven from https://www.bbc.co.uk/food/recipes/beetroot_chocolate_cake_82388

Photo Eight by Meal Makeover Moms at https://www.flickr.com/photos/34168666@N07/14438107217/

 

Sunday Quiz – An Inordinate Fondness for Beetles – The Answers!

Thick-legged flower beetle on ragwort

Dear Readers, Fran and Bobby Freelove have won the gold star again with 15/15 in the quiz, closely followed by FEARN, Anne and OKthislooksbad with 13/15. All of the the 13/15-ers got number 6 (the harlequin ladybird) and number 10 (the 16-spot orange ladybird) the wrong way round, which looking at the photos is not surprising :-). One way to id a harlequin is that it always has tiny indents at the bottom of the wing covers, and believe it or not, this photo was the clearest that I could find (though not halfway clear enough, obviously!) I hope you enjoyed the quiz, and very well done everybody, you did a splendid job. Because you’ve all done so well, if you pop a request for the next quiz in the comments I shall consider it kindly. 

Dear Readers, I hope you enjoyed this week’s quiz – I must say I really enjoyed looking at the photographs of these extraordinary insects, so varied and so exquisite (even the ones that munch on my lavender and eat other people’s lilies). Did you have a favourite? I have to say that the golden-bloomed longhorn beetle struck me as particularly gorgeous, but I have a great fondness for every single one. When I was growing up, we used to have stag beetles in our ‘summer room’ (aka cheap conservatory) and when Dad took us to watch the speedway at Hackney, the air would be full of cockchafers. Let’s do everything that we can to support these extraordinary animals.

Photo One by Bruce Marlin / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.5)

1) d) Green Tiger Beetle (Cicindela campestris)

Photo Two by George Chernilevsky / Public domain

2) n) Stag Beetle (Lucanus cervus)

Photo Three by Salicyna / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)

3) j) Lily beetle (Lilioceris lilii)

Photo Four by Hectonichus / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)

4) a) Rosemary beetle (Chrysolina americana)

Photo Five by Galwaygirl / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)

5) l) Devil’s coach-horse (Staphylinus olens

Photo Six by spacebirdy(also known as geimfyglið (:> )=| made with Sternenlaus-spirit) / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)

6) m) Harlequin ladybird ( Harmonia axyridis)

Photo Seven by nick goodrum from Catfield in Norfolk, United Kingdom / CC BY (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)

7) c) Bloody-nosed beetle (Timarcha tenebricosa)

Photo Eight by By André Karwath aka Aka - Own work, CC BY-SA 2.5, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=875749

8) h) Click beetle (Athous haemorrhoidalis)

Photo Nine by By I, Chrumps, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=2521547

9) b) Rose Chafer (Cetonia aurata)

Photo Ten by Ben Sale from UK / CC BY (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)

10) i) 16-spot orange ladybird ( Halyzia 16-guttata)

Photo Eleven by Donald Hobern from Copenhagen, Denmark / CC BY (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)

11) k) Sexton beetle (Nicrophorus vespillo)

Photo Twelve by AJC1 from UK / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)

12) g) Vine weevil (Otiorhynchus sulcatus)

Photo Thirteen by Ryan Hodnett / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)

13) f) Thistle tortoise beetle (Cassida rubiginosa)Photo Fourteen by nick goodrum from Catfield in Norfolk, United Kingdom / CC BY (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)14) o) Cockchafer/May bug ( Melolontha melolontha)

Photo Fifteen by Siga / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)

15) e) Golden-bloomed grey longhorn beetle (Agapanthia villosoviridescens)

Photo Credits

Photo One by Bruce Marlin / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.5)

Photo Two by George Chernilevsky / Public domain

Photo Three by Salicyna / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)

Photo Four by Hectonichus / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)

Photo Five by Galwaygirl / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)

Photo Six by spacebirdy(also known as geimfyglið (:> )=| made with Sternenlaus-spirit) / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)

Photo Seven by nick goodrum from Catfield in Norfolk, United Kingdom / CC BY (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)

Photo Eight by By André Karwath aka Aka – Own work, CC BY-SA 2.5, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=875749

Photo Nine by By I, Chrumps, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=2521547

Photo Ten by Ben Sale from UK / CC BY (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)

Photo Eleven by Donald Hobern from Copenhagen, Denmark / CC BY (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)

Photo Twelve by AJC1 from UK / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)

Photo Thirteen by Ryan Hodnett / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)

Photo Fourteen by nick goodrum from Catfield in Norfolk, United Kingdom / CC BY (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)

Photo Fifteen by Siga / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)

Sunday in the Garden and Some Thoughts on Sun Beetles

Fledgling starling

Dear Readers, the fledgling starlings are gradually reappearing in the garden: I must admit to missing their bickering and general shenanigans. They have a distinctly half and half look to them at the moment – the head on this one is still very juvenile, but its body is acquiring the iridescent plumage and the ‘stars’ that give the bird its common name. The head and upper parts are likely to remain brown right through the bird’s first winter, only changing in the spring.

As the bird comes into breeding condition it will become darker in colour with fewer breast spots, and the beak changes from black to yellow. There will be a blue flush at the base of the bill if the bird is male, a rosy flush if it is a female (it’s very handy to have a species colour-coded!)

Next to the starling, a squirrel is eating a ridiculous quantity of sunflower seeds. Looking at her belly, I suspect that she has her second babies of the year on the way, or already in the nest.

Mrs Squirrel

Mrs Squirrel’s stomach

I’m looking forward to seeing the new youngsters when they emerge, they were so much fun last time.Looks like the robins have been busy too. This will be their second brood of the year.

Baby robin amongst the jasmine flowers

An adult robin sat in the lilac ticking away, but the fledgling seemed oblivious as it chased mealworms and refused to pay attention. The adult seems as if he or she is currently going through the moulting process, and has a generally threadbare look. I’m sure they’ll be glad when all this feather-shedding nonsense is over and done with.

Anxious adult robin

And finally, I have been noticing how the butterflies seem to visit the garden in waves. For a few days there were gatekeepers (Pyronia tithonus) everywhere, but now there seems to be a little storm of holly blues (Celastrina argiolis). In the spring the butterfly lays its eggs on holly, as you might expect, but in summer it turns its attention to ivy – I must check the ivy that is sprawling over the shed to see if there are any eggs or caterpillars. It is the most delicate little beauty, and it’s said to prefer honeydew to nectar, though it makes an exception for the hemp agrimony. I love those big dark eyes, and the bands on the antennae.

Holly blue (Celastrina argiolus)

Now, my beetles quiz yesterday made me think about when I was a child and used to root around in our East London garden with my mother’s cutlery, looking for insects. Some of my favourites were the little metallic beetles that used to scurry about, especially on sunny days. Dad always called them ‘sun beetles’, and said that they were good for the garden because they ate all the ‘baddies’.

It turns out that, as usual, Dad was right – the adult beetles eat creatures such as the apple maggot and the soybean aphid, and they are being put to work in orchards and fields to help with pest control. It makes me sad that he’s not here for me to tell, he’d be well chuffed. But gradually, I find that I’m remembering the good times with Mum and Dad rather than all the illness and misery of their last few years, and I’m also remembering them as my parents, rather than as the subjects of my care. As usual, the natural world seems to help me to knit them together again in my memory as whole, unique human beings. In my mind’s eye I remember the sun beetles running over the clods of earth like drops of mercury, while Dad rests on his spade and wipes the sweat from his eyes with a brown, muscular forearm. I look up at him from where I’m perched on a stone, trying to mark some ants with watercolour paint so that I’ll recognise them next time I meet them, and I feel utterly safe and contented. Dad’s calmness in the face of everything in the natural world, his curiosity and his gentleness have soaked into me like so much badly-needed rainwater. What gifts he gave me.

 

 

Sunday Quiz – An Inordinate Fondness for Beetles

Thick-legged flower beetle on ragwort

Dear Readers, I hope you will not mind that, for the second week in a row, I am featuring insects as the subject for the quiz – I am called ‘Bugwoman’ after all! The quote in the title comes from the British evolutionary biologist J.B.S Haldane, who said;

“If one could conclude as to the nature of the Creator from a study of creation it would appear that God has an inordinate fondness for stars and beetles.”

There are over 400,000 species of beetle that we know about, and they constitute 25% of all known animal life-forms, so it seemed appropriate that they should have a moment in the spotlight. In the quiz below, I’ve tried to choose beetles whose names and body-shape might give you a clue: they are all from the UK, but I’m sure that wherever you are in the world you might have something similar. Anyhoo, have a go!

Beetles

Match the photo to the name. So, if you think photo 1) is a Rosemary beetle, your answer is 1)a).

Good luck!

a) Rosemary beetle (Chrysolina americana)

b) Rose Chafer (Cetonia aurata)

c) Bloody-nosed beetle (Timarcha tenebricosa)

d) Green Tiger Beetle (Cicindela campestris)

e) Golden-bloomed grey longhorn beetle (Agapanthia villosoviridescens)

f) Thistle tortoise beetle (Cassida rubiginosa)

g) Vine weevil (Otiorhynchus sulcatus)

h) Click beetle (Athous haemorrhoidalis)

i) 16-spot orange ladybird ( Halyzia 16-guttata)

j) Lily beetle (Lilioceris lilii)

k) Sexton beetle (Nicrophorus vespillo)

l) Devil’s coach-horse (Staphylinus olens)

m) Harlequin ladybird ( Harmonia axyridis)

n) Stag Beetle (Lucanus cervus)

o) Cockchafer/May bug ( Melolontha melolontha)

Answers will be published on Tuesday, so if you want to be ‘marked’, put your answer in the comments by 5 p.m. UK time on Monday. If you don’t want to be influenced by people who’ve answered before you, I suggest you do that old-school thing and write your responses down first :-). And even if you don’t feel confident to ‘go public’, have a go! You might be surprised by what you already know.

Onwards!

Photo One

1)

Photo Two by George Chernilevsky / Public domain

2)

Photo Three by Salicyna / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)

3)

Photo Four by Hectonichus / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)

4)

Photo Five by Galwaygirl / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)

5)

Photo Six by spacebirdy(also known as geimfyglið (:> )=| made with Sternenlaus-spirit) / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)

6)

Photo Seven by nick goodrum from Catfield in Norfolk, United Kingdom / CC BY (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)

7)

Photo Eight by By André Karwath aka Aka - Own work, CC BY-SA 2.5, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=875749

8)

Photo Nine by By I, Chrumps, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=2521547

9)

Photo Ten by Ben Sale from UK / CC BY (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)

10)

Photo Eleven by Donald Hobern from Copenhagen, Denmark / CC BY (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)

11)

Photo Twelve by AJC1 from UK / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)

12)

Photo Thirteen by Ryan Hodnett / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)

13)

Photo Fourteen by nick goodrum from Catfield in Norfolk, United Kingdom / CC BY (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)

14)

Photo Fifteen by Siga / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)

15)