The enormous ivy (Hedera helix) overgrowth on an old tree behind All Saints Church, Rampton, was heaving with honeybees, bumblebees (various species), hoverflies (and other diptera), ivy bees, hornets, and red admiral butterflies during a sunny and warm lunchtime. I knew it would be, I’ve been keeping an eye on it for a week or two waiting for it to blossom. The acrid and yet pleasantly heady aroma hits you first as you walk into the churchyard. And, almost simultaneously you notice the buzzing. A lot of buzzing, the buzzing of thousands of pairs of tiny wings.
Ivy blossom is so important in the autumn for invertebrates once the usual flowers are beyond nectar making and their sugary food supply dries up. I have let the ivy on the fence at the rear of our garden grow quite wild again this year. After dark, I spotted lots of night feeders – several Large Yellow Underwing, some Vine’s Rustic, an Angle Shades, and various flies and other critters. The leaves had plenty of snails after the rains.