As spring slowly brings our nature reserves to life you may spot these tiny mounds of earth in the grass or on patches of  bare earth. They are the nests of the Tawny Mining bee which build their nests at this time of year. The nest consists of a vertical shaft 8-12 inches long with several brood cells branching off. The female fills each cell with a mixture of nectar and pollen on which she lays one egg. The larvae quickly develops and begins pupating, to emerge as an adult the…

Spring is definitely on the way, you can hear it! Not just the sound track of the birds establishing territories but also the friendly hum of Bumblebees. This time of year it is the queens that you will hear as they emerge from hibernation to start a new colony.  They wake up hungry and thirsty and therefore it is vital that they find early flowers to feed on. The newly emerged queens eat both nectar and pollen. It is actually the pollen that helps her ovaries develop in preparation for all the worker bees she…

The city’s waterways seem an unlikely habitat for finding otters in but as always nature can surprise you. Working with the Wildlife Trust the city’s nature reserves were surveyed for otter activity with very pleasing results. Spraint was found at 9 Wells, Logan’s Meadow, Stourbridge Common and Coldhams Common. According to the Wildlife Trust just 15 years ago the otter population had almost disappeared around Cambridge. But since then the numbers have been steadily rising. Survey statistics gathered from Wildlife Trust staff and volunteers, the Cambridgeshire Mammal Group and the…