Send us your wildlife sightings

Recording wildlife is an easy way to get involved in wildlife conservation. It is a way of helping us to monitor wildlife across the county to gain an understanding of an animal’s distribution. Your sightings can help us identify areas which are especially important for wildlife and identify species in decline or under threat.

Each season we ask you to help Norfolk's wildlife by sending us your sightings of three iconic species. You don't have to be an expert – all you need to do is tell us when and where you spot them. Use the form to record online, or phone or email us using the details below.

Our current total of wildlife records submitted for this survey are


42
Cockchafer

19
Holly Blue

219
Tree bumblebee

Log your wildlife sightings here...

Sighting locations so far...


Key

Cockchafer
Holly Blue
Tree bumblebee
This June, July and August we are asking people to share their wildlife sightings of three insects you may find in your garden: maybug (also known as cockchafer), holly blue butterfly and tree bumblebee.

All three species are found in gardens and the wider countryside. So, this summer keep your eyes peeled for the buzz of a tree bumblebee, particularly if it is hanging around a bird box (they love to nest in them); the blue of a holly blue as it flutters around holly and ivy and at night a maybug may be hanging around your outside lights.

Help us learn more about their distribution by submitting your sightings this summer.
Cockchafer
This large flying beetle, also known as the may-bug, it is easily recognisable with its feathery ...
Holly Blue
The holly blue is widespread throughout Southern England though its range has been extending nort...
Tree bumblebee
The tree bumblebee first arrived in the UK in 2001 probably from mainland Europe and it has quick...

Why do we want your tree bumblebee sightings?

The tree bumblebee first arrived in the UK in 2001 probably from mainland Europe and it has quickly colonised. It seems to particularly like gardens and woodlands and will often be seen nesting in bird boxes. This distinctive looking bee, with its ginger thorax, black abdomen and white tail can be seen from March until July, being particularly abundant from late spring to early summer.

 

Why send us your maybug sightings?

This large flying beetle, also known as the may-bug, it is easily recognisable with its feathery antennae, pointy abdomen and mahogany coloured wing cases, can be spotted between the months of May to July. The decline of this beetle may be due to modern farm machinery killing the larvae during soil cultivation. Cockchafers are an important prey item for larger bat species and further declines in this and other large beetle species could be detrimental to bats.

 

Why send us your holly blue sightings?

The adults of the holly blue can be seen on the wing from March through to October.  This blue butterfly tends to fly high around bushes and trees, unlike the other blues that stay low over grassland.  Although the holly blue is widespread its numbers can fluctuate in number from year to year.

Tree bumblebee

  1. This first record of this species in the Great Britain was in 2001 and the first Norfolk record was in Earlham Park in Norwich in 2008.
  2. This bumblebee nests above ground, often in trees, earning it the name of tree bumblebee.
  3. The fur on the thorax of these bees can get worn making them look bald.
  4. As well as woodland this bee likes suburbia for bird boxes and manmade environments to nest in.
  5. When a colony starts the workers tend to be small but as the colony establish itself the foragers, workers who go out for food get larger.

May bug

  1. The maybug is also known as the Cockchafer.
  2. In Norfolk the maybug has many local name such as chovy, mitchmador, kittywitch and midsummer dor.
  3. At Barnham Cross Common, Thetford, cockchafers reportedly stopped a cricket match, as a result of the sheer number of this large beetle flying across the pitch.
  4. Before agriculture was intensified these beetles were especially problematic, so much so that adults were caught and killed to break their life cycle, in 1911, more than 20 million individuals were collected in 18 km² of forest.
  5. Maybugs were destructive to agricultural crops and in 1320 cockchafers (as a species) were taken to court in Avignon where they were ordered to leave town and relocate to a specially designated area, or be outlawed. All cockchafers who failed to comply were collected and killed.

Holly blue

  1. The population of holly blue butterflies goes through a boom and bust cycle so it is difficult to tell how well they are doing.
  2. The caterpillar has two distinct food plants. In the spring they feed on the flower buds of holly and, in late summer, switch to ivy.
  3. Holly blue butterflies fly higher than other species, so if a blue butterfly flies past you at head height it is likely to be a holly blue.
  4. In 1717 Petiver recorded the blue speckt butterfly. Since then the name has been recorded as azure blue (1775), wood blue (1795), holly blue (1853) and bluspeckt butterfly (1913)
  5. The holly blue is the national butterfly of Finland.

Download the reports on our previous surveys

   Brown-hare,-barn-owl-and-common-frog-survey-April,-May-and-June-2015 Download   
   Hedgehog,-House-Martin-and-Red-Admiral-Survey-August-2015 Download   
   Water-vole,-grass-snake-and-Himalayan-balsam-survey-July-2015 Download   
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Have you seen any other wildlife recently? We would love to hear about it... Notify us now

How to take part in this wildlife survey...

Online


The quickest way to take part is by clicking on the submit button below. You will then be asked: what you saw, when you saw it, where you saw it and who you are.

By phone


Phone Norfolk Wildlife Trust’s Wildlife Information Service on 01603 598333. Don’t forget you will need to tell us: what you saw, when you saw it, where you saw it and who you are.

By e-mail


Send us an email to wild@norfolkwildlifetrust.org.uk. Don’t forget you will need to tell us: what you saw, when you saw it, where you saw it and who you are.

Take part today...