Category Archives: Pollinators

Pollinators!

Until this week, we have seen very few pollinators along the MRG Pollinator Corridor. It was a relief to finally spot many bees and a few monarchs and hummingbirds these last few days The red bee balm is a powerful draw! And the butterfly milkweed is finally attracting monarchs.

Where Are the bees?

There have been very few bees and butterflies along the MRG Pollinator Corridor so far this year. We keep hoping that they have found some idyllic, pesticide-free meadow nearby and are congregating there , soon to show up for the Echinacea, Black-eyed Susans, Bee Balm, Black Cohosh, Calendula, Day Lilies, Obedient Plant, and all the other treats on offer right now at the garden west of the overpass by APD. The good news is the hummingbird that was enjoying the red bee balm today!

Hummingbird Moth

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Work on the tunnel this Spring destroyed the MRG pollinator garden on the Goss Logan hillside. Only the hardiest of perennials survived. Red bee balm was one of the survivors . . .  and it attracted this tiny hummingbird moth. These Dr. Seuss-like creatures have hummingbird energy, hovering and darting about. The proboscis and antennae are like those of butterflies. The furriness and striping are like bumble bees. The tail is like that of a lobster.

The caterpillar stage of the hummingbird moth looks much like a tomato hornworm. Hard to believe that this creature that looks so much like a hummingbird could emerge from such a caterpillar!

.The caterpillar of the hummingbird moth bears a horn at the tip of its tail that gives rise to the colloquial name of these larvae.  

Hummingbird Moth Caterpillar Stage

Rain!

Rain refreshed the various pollinator gardens along the MRG today – there were pollinators aplenty!

Silver Spotted Skipper on Echinacea

Tiny bees on Black-eyed Susan

Bee on Bee Balm

Silver Spotted Skipper on Liatris

Sweat bee on Echinacea

Hummingbird Moth

It was exciting to spot a hummingbird moth in the MRG parking lot pollinator garden  (west of the overpass near Alice Peck Day Hospital.)

The first sighting of a hummingbird moth can be very confusing; Is it a bird? A big bee? A butterfly? A moth? It buzzes, hovers, and flies from flower to flower like a hummingbird . Instead of a beak like a hummingbird, it has a long tongue-like proboscis that can reach the nectar deep inside flowers. The antennae, colors, and furryness make it look like a bumble bee . . . and the tail is like that of a lobster. It looks like a creature designed by Dr. Seuss! This one lingered longest on the liatris, which seems to be a favored perennial of many pollinators..