Eye on Nature: Your notes and queries
Diving beetles, a dead swift, and bug eggs
We spotted five or six shrimp-like creatures, about 5cm long, in one of our ponds, which has no tadpoles. The other pond has tadpoles but no creatures.
They were the voracious larvae of the great diving beetle. They would have eaten any tadpoles in the pond.
We found a dead swift in our garden. It looked in perfect condition except for a tiny hole at the top of its head, which had tiny tick-like insects crawling out of it. Was this a parasite that killed it?
Sallynoggin, Co Dublin
That is likely. It would have picked up the tick where it was nesting, as swifts live in the air and land only to breed.
I spotted a group of tiny green eggs on the wall of my porch and wondered what insect laid them.
Glanmire, Co Cork
From looking at your photograph, they were the eggs of the green shield bug, which usually lays on the underside of a leaf but occasionally does so on walls.
Michael Viney welcomes observations at Thallabawn, Louisburgh, Co Mayo, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include a postal address