Wednesday, 10 April 2013
It's Heather Beetle time again!
The first heather beetle sighting report in 2013 has been received - at Blackheath in Surrey on 7 April 2013. Thank you to Sheenagh McLaren, who also took this great photograph of the beetle she spotted.
While Surrey might not be the first place you would look to find heather beetles, it does show that they are not confined to large expanses of moorland. Those with long memories may remember that the first sighting I received last year from the island of Colonsay on the West Coast of Scotland. My view is that heather beetles live everywhere where there is heather, but I do not know, and no-one does, what causes the population to bloom to plague proportions, which results in the extensive areas of damage that we are all too familiar with.
Where there is one heather beetle, there are likely to be others and I would be delighted to receive more reports. Please keep your eyes open.
I will be using this report to kick start the annual survey of heather beetle and will be publishing the details I receive on the Trust's website. See the dedicated Heather Beetle page for more information about this threat to heather.