Earlier today there were 4 Northern Wheatear (3♂, 1♀) and a single Garden Warbler present in the Barrs Lane area (TMH) and these were still present on my arrival mid afternoon.
The good weather had also livened up things on the invertebrate front in the Barrs Lane area with Buff-tailed Bumblebee, Common Carder Bee and Small Tortoiseshell all noted.
Of greater interest at Barrs Lane though was seeing a Gooden's Nomad Bee, the first I have recorded on the patch. This is a species of solitary cuckoo bee that parasitizes the nest of various species of mining bee. The female Gooden's Nomad Bee waits until a female Mining Bee has excavated a nest tunnel and has provisioned a nest cell with pollen for her larva. When the mining bee is away on one of it's many pollen gathering trips the Gooden's Nomad female visit the cell and lay her own egg there. The Gooden's Nomad larvae then consumes the pollen provision of the host bee. It's truly fascinating stuff!
My next stop was at Heath Lane where I recorded another Garden Warbler singing from the scrub at the edge of the Islamic School sports field. At one point 8 Common Buzzards were up soaring over the model aircraft field and a 9th Common Buzzard was sat perched on a hedgerow at the paddock.
Things were fairly good insect wise here too with the first patch Orange Tip butterfly of the year flitting around. Also noted were 1 Peacock, 4 Small Tortoiseshells and a Common Carder Bee.
My final port of call was Curslow Lane where 5 Northern Wheatear and 3 Pied Wagtails were present on the rolled seed bed.
Orange Tip (♂) - 1st May 2013
Gooden's Nomad Bee (Nomada goodeniana)
Northern Wheatear - 1st May 2013