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I have been interested in nature for most of my life but since I retired I spend as much time as I can exploring the nature reserves and wildlife hotspots of my adopted home, Dorset in southern England. Whilst out I record what I see and take snaps where I can (I am no photographer!) and that forms the basis of my Nature of Dorset website. When I find something new I like to research it and write about it in my nature notes, it is how I learn and hopefully you might find my notes helpful as well!

This website is for the people of Dorset interested in wildlife and for people from elsewhere interested in the wildlife of Dorset!

30 April, 2012

Hoverfly: Platycheirus albimanus

Spring is a peak time of year for Dandelion and Daisy flowers and it seems nearly every Dandelion has a small, dark coloured insect feeding on it. Closer inspection shows these to be hoverflies, many of them this species, Platycheirus albimanus.
This is one of the most numerous of hoverflies and occurs throughout the British Isles and will be found along woodland rides and margins, hedgerows and in gardens however, because it is so small and almost insignificant it is just not really noticed by anyone other than the enthusiast. It is also one of a range of similar species and identification can be difficult without actually catching a specimen and examining it under a microscope. I can't bring myself to do that so if I have wrongly identified this species I apologise.
Occuring all through the spring and summer months but is especially numerous and, therefore conspicuous in late April and early May.
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Find out more about the nature of Dorset at www.natureofdorset.co.uk