A lovely sunny day for 26 walkers to join me on a West Norfolk NWT walk around Holme Dunes looking at summer flowers and butterflies. Many flowers were in full bloom, including the Pyramidal Orchids, all the Marsh Orchids and the Marsh Helleborines. A few Bee Orchids were still in flower. Some other plants were beginning to dry up and go to seed, especially the Hop Trefoil. We were able to see a good selection of saltmarsh plants in "flotsam corner" by the Saltings. A young Common Lizard was hiding in the flotsam.
There were a lot of butterflies on the wing but of limited species i.e. Meadow Brown, Ringlet, Small Heath, Small Skipper, Red Admiral, Speckled Wood and Green-veined White.
Some of the group spent some time watching an Ichneumon Fly Rhyssa persuasoria drilling holes into pine trunks with its ovipositor to lay eggs in horntail larvae. (I was not there and so don't have any photos).
After the walk I had a little wander around and found a few solitary bees buzzing around in the dunes. I managed to get a photo of one which I believe could be Megachile maritima, a leaf-cutter bee which has dilated front legs. I also found one new plant for the patch this year, some white Canterbury-bells by the path to the first hide. These have appeared for the last few years and presumably are an escape from somewhere.
A pair of Ringlet butterflies
A leaf-cutter bee Megachile maritime ?
White Canterbury-bells Campanula medium