Hello from Naish Farm. This week I can see the season subtly changing. Some of the trees in our young woodland are taking on a golden hue.
Our hedgerows are full of little gems. Sloe berries, Rosehips, plump blackberries and crab apples.
Very soon there will be a changing of the guard around the farm. The swallows which make our barn home will soon be getting the itch to return to Africa. I watched a squadron of smart suited swallows lining up along the pylons at Honeybuns.
They looked restless; it amazes me how young swallows can navigate the long haul back to South Africa and Namibia.
I usually focus on our resident honey bees. If you would indulge me I’d like to write a little about the bees nemesis, the wasp. Vespa Vugaris is a much maligned insect. The little terrors are very active around September. One of the team has fallen victim to an attack recently. Wasp’s aggressive habits can be explained.
As the temperature rises and the hive becomes crowded, tension in the colony increases. The stripy menaces are getting hangry’. Caring for the queen and the brood takes its toil on the workers, they need a sugar rush.
Tree sap, ripening fruit, and honey are all coveted. The sugar in great deal of human food is an easy option for naughty Jaspers. Who can blame them for taking advantage of our own sugar addiction?
Our bees are still active at the moment. I’ve noticed a slower tempo around the Hives. Mornings are getting chilly and days are shortening, natural triggers for our hives to go into autumn dormancy. The remaining workers will spend less and less time outside. They keep each other warm on evenings by huddling together in a cluster. Although they spend less time out foraging for pollen there is still work do to for our diminutive colleagues. Hive maintenance and keeping the colony’s Queen cosseted are occupying the workers while the temperature is still warm enough.
In other wildlife news, I’ve sighted a few interesting creatures around the Honeybuns site. On my cycle to work I watched a Kestrel on the hunt. It was a privilege to see such a beautiful bird so close. Its eyes and head never wavered from tracking the unfortunate vole it was hunting. The elusive Green Woodpecker was seen displaying its curious swooping flight. I love their olive green jackets, it’s such a vibrate plumage, so unique among British birds.