Three’s a crowd
Pictured we can see three hoverflies feeding on a native wild Teasel plant. These insects are the second most important pollinator after wild bees. Bees are capable of carrying more pollen per plant visit, but hoverflies are able to cover larger areas and make more plant visits. Hoverflies also take an active role in controlling aphid populations (which are carriers of plant viruses).
To help support pollinator populations, Teagasc’s Oak Park Crops Research Centre has planted arable biodiversity field margins and hedges (herbaceous strips managed specifically to provide benefits for wildlife).
This photo was taken in August during harvest time on the front lawn of Oak Park House.
Photo and description by: Fiona Hutton, Research Technologist, Teagasc
Teagasc project: Integrated Pest Management in Tillage Crops