Their busy buzzing supplies the soundtrack to our summer – and by spotting them I’ve found a fresh sense of inner peace
Lockdown started, or reignited, a love of nature in many people. The RSPB reported a 70% increase in visitors to its website during the first lockdown. This came as no surprise to me; stuck at home, without the usual distraction of social engagement, my interest in nature grew. During the winter, I would look up into leafless trees trying to locate a bird whose loud call I could clearly hear. I even bought myself a pair of binoculars so I could acquaint myself with some of the local avian population.
But now I have a new hobby. As the warmer weather slowly arrives, I have been lowering my gaze towards the stirring flower beds and roadside verges, as well as rustling in the undergrowth in the hope of spotting my favourite insects. On a sunny day, there’s nothing better than sitting quietly by a patch of swaying flowers or under a blossoming tree to listen for the tell-tale sign of buzzing. This quintessential sound of summer connects me to the seasons and the natural world, even in the inner city, and fills me with joy. It is also a welcome break from staring at a screen all day. I wait peacefully, in anticipation and excitement of seeing different types of bees.
Bees act as a crucial romantic go-between for much of our flora
I have launched a newsletter with tips for identifying bees and how to help them