Ok, it’s not the Grasshopper itself that’s unusual, but the location and view that I haven’t seen before.
This Grasshopper decided to spend a while on the window. Initially I was concerned it was caught in the spider’s web, but much to the spider’s frustration, when the Grasshopper eventually moved off the window, it took bits of the web with it!
We’ve had a bird box on the back wall for years. Some years we’re lucky enough to get a couple of Wrens nesting in there, although last year some of the youngsters fell prey to a very bold Jay. The plan was to keep the nest box in place until after nesting season, then remove it.
We could hear a strange buzzing sound near the window overlooking the garden, and had noticed there were several bees flying around in that area. What we hadn’t expected, was for a group of bees to be making their home in the bird box!
We’re assuming that the moss & sticks that are sticking out of the box, were parts of the Wren’s nest material that the bees had pushed out of the box to block the entrance hole.
Looking at the before & after photos, ignoring the amount of mess on the front of the box(!) you can see the way the bird box has been pushed apart by the bees. I would never have expected them to be able to make something that would force a wooden bird box apart like that!
Having done some research, it turns out these are Tree Bumblebees (Bombus hypnorum), which commonly make their nests in empty bird boxes.
A surprise spot for today – I’d heard a lot of chirping in the garden, so I looked out and spotted the adult Wren flying from the bird box over to the tree, then back to the box again. A little while later, I looked out again and saw what I’m assuming is a baby Wren, sitting in the tree as well.
When the Wrens nested in the bird box previously (six years ago), the fledglings all left the nest together, then the entire family flew off that evening.
This family seems to be doing things differently, as they appeared to head back into the box for the evening. So whether there are other young ones in the box still, or the adults are just a little more wary of their young needing to be fully competent at flying before they ‘move out’, I can’t be certain!
But at the moment, it looks like a nice success story from the nest box 🙂
You can tell the weather is starting to change and that the hot sunny days we’ve had recently are going to be replaced with cooler cloudy days for a while. Although for me, that means more photogenic clouds to take pictures of… and the garden and allotment should be happy if we get some decent amounts of rain!