Woolly aphids, woolly thistles, shield bugs and earwigs

Well what an evening.

Last night we were so privileged to have Brian Eversham, the CEO of the (Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Northamptonshire and Peterborough) Wildlife Trust talking at our Autumn Drinks evening on ‘Overlooked Wildlife’ … and what a talk it was.

The evening started with Ellie Stoneley standing in for Honorary Chair Julian Huppert MP, addressing the crowd (over 60 people came along to the evening) and giving a brief overview of all we’ve done at FoSC over the last year. Then Lisa our Treasurer and Membership Secretary talked through the accounts and Pete (our own resident wildlife and flora expert) described the condition of the scrapes on the Common, and went through the various creatures that have been spotted over the year including snipe and 2 grass snakes. Ellie then introduced Brian Eversham.

Brian had done some wonderful research for his talk by spending an afternoon on Stourbridge Common and taking some quite marvellous photographs of everything from the Common itself, to the tiny creatures that share it alongside the cows and all of us.

He described in marvellous detail and with tremendously engaging enthusiasm the detail which makes it possible to identify a female earwig from a male earwig, the minute differences between flies, non-biting gnats and what goes on on the head of a woolly thistle.

He urged the crowd, “If you don’t know insects at all then at least get to know the shield bug” and even caused everybody to feel awed and dare I say it even fond of the horse-chestnut leaf miner by showing us how it develops inside the leaf and then forms a tiny chrysalis and goes on to be come a perfect brown and white stripy moth which turns an iridescent green at sun set.

The talk was wonderful and left a Friday evening room full of people grinning from ear to ear and doubtless planning to head to the Common forthwith armed with magnifying glasses and cameras to hunt out garlic snails and woolly aphids.

Brian has also kindly offered to come and lead an Overlooked Wildlife walk for us on the Common in April or May next year.

So … huge thanks to Brian Eversham, to Cllr Ian Nimmo-Smith the Mayor of Cambridge who also came and took part in our evening, to the FoSC committee and to all who attended.

It was an unforgettable evening.

I will be posting up some of the photographs which Brian showed us over coming days, but in the meantime you might enjoy his blog

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2 Responses to Woolly aphids, woolly thistles, shield bugs and earwigs

  1. […] the most wonderful talk last Autumn and enthused  a full hall of fascinated people with speak of woolly aphids, shield bugs and earwigs so we know that this talk will be superb and great fun as […]

  2. […] Weevils, Moths and Flies Following on from his wonderful talk at our Autumn meeting in September 2011, Brian Everham, the head of the  Wildlife Trust for […]

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