Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Vegie garden wildlfe

Yesterday I mentioned a skipper butterfly that 'got away' - I couldn't get a photo. Today I managed to get photos good enough to get a positive ID. And it turned out to be a species that I've found in my garden, in other summers, on grevilleas and lomandra. Today it was on garlic chive flowers, grass and tomatoes. It's a relatively common skipper species Greenish Grass-dart Ocybadistes walkeri.

And this little bee was on the garlic chive flowers as well. It's a resin bee Megachile leucopyga. On the BrisbaneInsects webpage it's called Gold-barred Resin Bee. Apparently they build nests in holes of hardwood timber, including man-made drilled holes. The entrance is usually sealed with a solid resin plug. They provision their brood with pollen and nectar.

Monday, 6 February 2012

In which another cuckoo visits my garden

A bright little bee visited my garden this morning and I didn't know what it was. Turns out it's a Chequered Cuckoo Bee Thyreus caecruleopunctatus. Apparently the females lay their eggs in partially-constructed brood cells of Blue-banded Bees. The similar-looking Neon Cuckoo Bee has a different stripe pattern on the abdomen.

Most of the records for this bee on Atlas of Australia are in March and April with a few in each of the other months.

Now I have to go back into the garden to have another go at photographing the little skipper butterfly feeding on the flowers of my garlic chives. Every attempt so far has been a dud.