Hemlock in the Furnace

Posted by Graeme Lyons , Sunday 13 June 2010 20:04

Well Hemlock Water-dropwort to be precise, but it sounded better without the water-dropwort. We went to Ebernoe Common today, Furnace Meadow in fact and it was again full of Hemlock Water-dropwort (bottom picture) and I have noticed it is a really good nectar source that fills the gap nicely between hawthorn and bramble. I was looking for the Small Black Longhorn Beetle Stenurella nigra and it did not take too long to find one. We saw six in total after about 30 minutes worth of searching as well as Speckled, Variable and Tobacco-coloured Longhorns and a few Common Grammoptera. Small Black Longhorn is actually Na and Ebernoe is still the only place I have seen it and there I have only seen it at Hemlock Water-dropwort! It looks quite like a wasp in flight, the glowing red abdomen is quite visible and coupled with the hovering flight as it approaches an umbel, it's quite easy to pick out on jizz. The abdomen looks like a tiny brake light!

I went and had a look at the fallen Beech in Leconfield Glade again and the only thing I saw was four Bitoma crenata crawling over the surface of a fallen limb, near to where the bark was starting to peel away.

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