Thursday, June 16, 2011

Nature Notes: Schnakenmoor

The Schnakenmoor is a nature reserve in Hamburg. The name comes from the many mosquitoes and midgets that live there in the summer (Schnake is an old word for mosquito, today it's usually used for crane flies).
It's a fairly big piece of land and there are two trails you can follow to explore it, both about 3 kilometres long. The landscape changes from wood to fen to grasslands to heather.

The cotton grass is in full bloom, as are the floxgloves.
and this flower, which I can't identify for sure, but it was very popular with butterflies, hoverflies and beetles.

We saw some big animals (deer in a game reserve that's part of the Schnakenmoor reserve)

and a lot of small ones like this solder beetle (Cantharis spec.)

a ladybug larva - they eat aphids and hundreds of them every day, even more than the adult beetle

a hoverfly (Syrphus ribesii) - the eyes are the key to telling the hoverflies and the bees or wasps they imitate apart. Also, neither bees nor wasps can hover.

a red apion weevil (Apion frumentarium), often found on dock plants (sorrel)

Nature Notes is hosted by Michelle at Rambling Woods

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