Heathers ablaze on the moor and buzzing with colour

There are three species of heather on Dartmoor and during August they come into flower and when blended with the yellows of the gorse give the moor that glorious look. There are also two specialist and quite rare bumblebees that live on the moor and feed on the heathers.

 

Heathers 1Purple, yellow and green

 

CallunaLing or common heather – Calluna vulgaris

Erica 3Bell heather Erica cinerea

Erica 1Cross-leaved heather Erica tetralix – tends to grow in wetter bits of the moor

Heath bumblebee 2The heath bumblebee – Bombus jonellus

Mountain bumblebee 1The much rarer mountain bumblebee Bombus monticola – unfortunately a declining species restricted to the moors and heaths of the south west, northern England, Wales and Scotland.

 

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