This insect makes a distinctive humming sound – what is it?

Eye on Nature: Your notes and queries for Ethna Viney

Hummingbird hawkmoth

Hummingbird hawkmoth

 

I came across this insect, about 3cm long, with a distinctive humming sound while airborne. It was not like any butterfly I’ve ever seen.
Patricia McNulty, Kilasser, Co Mayo
It was a hummingbird hawkmoth. Noreen Lyons of Portumna, Co Galway sent the photograph.

Holly (6) found yet another strange worm, also on the beach near Robswall. I looked online and I think it’s a sea mouse. It has a lovely rainbow sheen.
Noeleen Smyth, Swords, Co Dublin

Sea mouse worm
Sea mouse worm

Yes, it is a sea mouse.

This creature, which I think is a spider, was on the wall outside our house.
Mary Anne Fermoy, Kilmovee, Co Mayo

Cucumber green spider
Cucumber green spider

It’s the cucumber green spider, one of the smallest of the orb web spiders.

I found this in my garden hanging on the fence next to the pond. I don’t know why it’s empty. Is it a cicada or a locust?
Linda Quinlan, Blackrock, Co Dublin

Dragonfly larva case
Dragonfly larva case

It’s the empty larva case of a dragonfly.

This wildflower was growing at the edge of the bog in Cloghane, Co Kerry.
Paul Johnston, Brandon, Co Kerry

Bog bean wildflower
Bogbean wildflower

Bogbean is a perennial that grows in bogs and fens.

Our dog pulled a ball of thorns from the hedge recently. We observed it for a while and gradually the thorns unfurled to reveal this lovely hedgehog. We returned him to the hedge and took the dog away.
The Kellys, Clontibret, Co Monaghan

Hedgehog
Hedgehog

Should these mating damselflies not be the same colour?
Barbara Browne, Knockmore, Co Mayo

Damselflies
Damselflies

The male common bluet has a pattern of sky blue and black; the females have black with either blue, green or brown markings.

This gorgeous little butterfly was resting on the wall of my house.
Geraldine Molloy, Achill, Co Mayo

Common blue butterfly
Common blue butterfly

It’s the common blue butterfly. When open its wings are blue.

Ethna Viney welcomes observations and photographs at Thallabawn, Louisburgh, Co Mayo, F28 F978, or by email at viney@anu.ie. Please include a postal address

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