2011 News

Fermanagh Visit 2

Narrow Bordered Bee Hawkmoth, Fermanagh
Whens a Bee not a Bee?
Whilst in County Fermanagh photographing Orchids the sun briefly came out and with the sun came the insects. One in particular I have wanted to photograph since seeing my first one last year - the Narrow Bordered Bee Hawkmoth.

This day flying moth closely mimics a bumble bee with is stripped furry body and even having clear wings, with darker edges hence the first part of its name. This species is fast flying and rarely settles, feeding on flowers whilst it hovers dipping its long tongue into the flower to obtain nectar. Only briefly did I get close enough to get an image whilst it hovered beside a Red Clover flower. The food plant of larvae is normally Devil’s-bit Scabious.

This species was at one time described as common and widespread but there has been a contraction in range and population and it’s stronghold is now in upland limestone areas of Fermanagh. This year it has been seen in dunes close to Magilligan and there is a pre-1990 record from North Antrim, so this a fabulous species I will be looking out for closer to home.