July 13, 2024

A Denbighshire wildflower meadow has ‘beecome’ a new friendly home for a spring favouring insect.

Denbighshire County Council’s Biodiversity Team is busy surveying Wildflower Meadow Project sites as the growing season gets underway to look at how native plants are faring.

The team also investigate how the ‘Bee Friendly’ designated sites are providing support for local nature to flourish as well by providing plants for pollinators and grass for insect food.

During 2021 Hornet Hoverflies were found at wildflower meadow sites in Rhuddlan and Prestatyn. They can be seen from May till October and despite looking like a stinging hornet, they are actually harmless.

And now one Ruthin meadow is currently providing a home for a strikingly coloured bee species.

A female Tawny mining bee was found resting in a nest on the site. The spring flying bee with dense orange and red hair feed from a variety of flowers which make wildflower meadows the perfect area to locate to.

Tawny mining bees are usually seen from March to June and are common throughout south and central Britain.

Biodiversity Officers, Liam Blazey and Ellie Wainwright who discovered the nest, explained: “We have been out visiting sites recently to survey the species on the meadows. It’s really great to see the Tawny mining bee on this site as that’s what our ‘Bee Friendly’ meadows are all about, protecting bees and other insects as well as the plant species.

“The meadows provide the perfect biodiversity for these insects to flourish. By supporting these pollinators and their other relatives, our own food chain is being protected by the important role these amazing insects play.”

Cllr Barry Mellor, Lead Member for Environment and Transport, added: “Our ‘Bee Friendly’ meadows are not just about protecting wildflowers, they are also about supporting native insects as well and it is fantastic to see them doing this with this species of bee.

“Our ‘Bee Friendly’ sites logo really comes into its own here with the discovery of the Tawny mining bee at the Ruthin site and hopefully this is the first of many insects recorded for the 2023 season.”