James Lowen 

There were plenty of other buzzers too, including a tiny male Andrena that will doubtless pose me ID nightmares, the first bee-flies of my year, and several lovely Hairy-footed Flower-bees.

This is a very rare species in the UK, but one that is spreading from SE England following economisation earlier this century. The first Norfolk records were less than five years ago, from two sites in Brundall - including a housing estate. All very strange for a spring-flying species that I understood was hooked on sallow pollen. (Although  guess neither site is too far from a river valley, where willows grow.) 

Late morning on a sunny day is meant to be good for this species, and my visit coincided with a dozen males flying around, searching for females, one mating pair, and four holes with females digging away. It was truly splendid - and these bees were very lovely indeed.

Yep, there's no doubt about it. 

Beezer Goode... Evenbeezer Goode. 


29 Mar 2024 Even bees are good

Rewind to 1992, and the dance hit Ebeneezer Goode by The Shamen. The lyrics were a thinly veiled exhortation to the yoof (as we then were) to slip some MDMA of a Friday evening... "He's ever so good, He's Ebeneezer Goode... He created the vibe, he takes you for a ride... He takes you to the top, shakes you all around... 'eezer Goode, 'eezer Goode, he's Ebeneezer Goode... " 

Well, this week, I found myself singing a variant of this: "Beezer Goode... Even beezer Goode" (If you really need a translation: Bees are good, even bees are good.)

Yes, of course bees are always good, but this week they were particularly good, thanks to Keith Langdon who came across a colony of Grey-backed Mining-bee on an ostensibly nondescript, tiny slope with a bit of bare earth on a central Norwich housing estate.