Chrysis inaequidens, the jewelled cuckoo wasp

Look at this gorgeous North American solitary wasp (click the image for a bigger version if you like). Now wonder about its name – why is it named after a bird? After all, cuckoos are hardly known for their brightly coloured plumage. The answer lies in its lifestyle. Cuckoo wasps are so named because they […]

Beewolf buzzing Ryde once more

In 2007 The Ranger wrote about his local colony of Philanthus triangulum, the European beewolf. Sadly, in 2008 the fearsome little things were nowhere to be found – perhaps they despaired of the dismal weather. In 2009 too I searched without success, but inspired by Ian Boyd’s find in Newchurch I recently went back for […]

The bear and the bees – more Slovenian bee-houses

If you read The Ranger’s recent post about Slovenian bee-houses you must have shared his frustration at not to be able to see more detail of the exquisite little pictures painted on these traditional hives. Help is at hand from the interesting Virtual Beekeeping Gallery. The site has a bit more information about the bee-houses […]