Garden Robin

Garden Robin

Saturday, 6 June 2015

Garden Bioblitz 2015

Last weekend I took part in Garden Bioblitz 2015 - the aim is to list all the species you find in your garden over a 24 hour period. You don't need to spend hours and hours if you don't want to but just go out at different times of the day and record what you see. Help with identification is available on i-spot and when you have identified all the species you have found records can be entered on i-Record.

Garden biodiversity has not been that well researched in the past so every record is important.

You can only record species of animals and plants that have arrived in the garden of their own accord so all those lovely native shrubs, trees and flowers we've planted over the years can't be counted! :(

If you want to find out more or take part next year there is a website at

I couldn't take part on the Saturday (FA Cup Final) so opted to do the recording on Sunday, 31st May. The weather wasn't brilliant as it rained most of the morning. The afternoon luckily was dry with some sunny intervals.

Last year I found just over 70 species and, as expected with the cool weather, this year's findings were lower. There were certainly far fewer insects about and I didn't find even one spider. No mammals were seen this year - not even the Grey Squirrel who is a regular visitor.

Species seen


Blue Tit
Great Tit
Coal Tit
Wood Pigeon
Carrion Crow,
Feral Pigeon
House Sparrow

(Many of these weren't in flower this year but luckily many of the species I had also found in 2014 and were, therefore, easy to identify this time round.



Ribwort Plantain - was a bit worried about this one as we have planted this species in the wildflower "meadow" area but this was in the lawn in the front garden so I've counted it!

Green Alkanet (I am really pleased this has somehow self-seeded as its such a magnet for pollinating insects)

Upright Yellow Sorrel
Lesser Trefoil
Yellow Corydalis
Herb Robert
Hairy Bittercress


Common Nettle

Wall Speedwell
White Clover
Smooth Sow Thistle
Common Mouse-ear
Cut-leaved Dead-Nettle
Common Ragwort
Common Cat's Ear
Broad-leaved Willow Herb


This Hart's Tongue Fern has self-seeded in one of the stone walls




Oak - this Oak (Quercus sp.) self-seeded and OH has planted it in a pot

Common Whitebeam - a common street tree round here and this one self-seeded just after we moved in - its now huge and home to the nestbox which houses the Blue Tit family - all six chicks by the way are still doing well.


Meadow Grass

Perennial Rye Grass

Common Couch Grass


Rough-stalked Feather-moss


Common Frog
Common/Smooth Newt


Buff-tailed Bumble Bee
Honey Bee
Early Bumble Bee


Black Garden Ant
Red Ant


Holly Leaf Mine (Phytomyxa ilicis)

Stigmella aurella - found on Bramble


White-lipped Banded Snail

Garden Snail


Holly Blue


Bee Moth


I found a real hotspot for ladybirds in the front garden where part of the Beech hedge was in full sun. There were loads of Harlequins

Harlequin Ladybird

Several pairs were mating - anxious to guarantee the next generation!

and I was really pleased to find a native 2-spot ladybird in the same area of the hedge. Sorry rubbish photo to be honest when I am bioblitzing I just snap away to get a record for id purposes only as from memory they want you to upload loads of photos to verify your records.




Black Bean Aphid

Other Insects

Common Pond Skater
Common Rough Woodlouse

I ran out of time again this year so didn't have chance again to do any pond dipping or examine the log pile. There are several moss, lichen and grass species I am having problems identifying.

The total is higher than I expected given the cool weather - just over 60 species although a few may not be accepted by i-Record. For example, I suspect Honey Bee is probably not on their list! Last year I had problems with some of the species names although I think in the end I managed to record them all.

Its certainly a fun thing to do and would be particularly good if you had young children. It also makes you realise just how many species are using the garden and gives you an incentive to actually identify them all.


  1. Great post, cool photos and lots of species you've recorded there, well done.

  2. Thanks very much Ian :) Just have to enter all the records now but will probably leave that until tomorrow!

  3. Well done you finding so much, I really must get round to putting mine on I-Record this week. Have been making the most of the fine warmer weather over the past few days out in the garden, other jobs have got a little left behind.Now we just need this wind to drop a little...
    Amanda xx

    1. Huge apologies - also meant to say thank you :) Weather wasn't kind to either of us this year :(

  4. Worked hard Amanda! :) Far more flowers in hidden corners than I thought I would find! Have to admit haven't yet put mine on i-record - seem to remember it takes ages and will have to upload some photos. I think you and I both had problems last year with it and non-recognition of species names. Must try and do in next couple of days! Finding it hard too at the moment to fit everything in. Meant to do blog post on 30 Days Wild and have just totally run out of time today! and I still haven't done Plant Survey :(

    1. Have put my records on to day, must say it went quite smoothly. have not I.d every thing though. I am in the proses of combining my other blogs to a list and a photo for a area eg.. Garden, Park...places were I go on a regular basis. So this time next year I should be all sorted to ID everything in the garden.
      Amanda xx

    2. You're better organised than me Amanda :) Glad you managed to get your records on ok - must make myself do it later today (problems with too many other people needing to use the computer!). A good idea about putting everything together in one place - I had a typewritten list from last year and luckily had renamed the photos from that bioblitz which were all in one file as I got correct id. Trying now to do a blog post or at least start it on 30dayswild (probably put it on RR Nature Notes) whilst daughter and husband are out (ignoring housework I should be doing!!).

  5. Wow you did well - it's certainly helpful if you know what the species are - not so easy to join in I guess if you have a lot of photos and question marks as to what they are! But it's a great thing to do to learn more about the species of e.g. wildflowers in your own backyard. I'm always trying to learn what my wildflowers are, but find it hard to remember what they are called! Then there are all the insects.... :-)
    Love that alkanet. I don't think I've ever seen any.

    1. Thanks :) It took me ages last year to get some of the stuff identified. There is a website i-Spot where you can get help but it takes ages if you have a lot of species you need help on - I tried to shove 3 different mosses on one post and got told off!!!! as you are supposed to put them on their individually! Having said that the site is really helpful.

      Have similar problem remembering new names of wildflowers and insects - getting too many of those horrible CRAFT moments these days!!

    2. Lol had to look up CRAFT in the Urban Dictionary - oh yes, I know the feeling! :-)

    3. :) If the definition in the Urban Dictionary is the same you'll understand why I abbreviated it :)

    4. Going through comments, I have just looked up what CRAFT it...
      Amanda xx

    5. Brilliant isn't it :) Sadly have had several such moments today!! :(