When I was looking into a shoe box with some beautiful Finnwool (aka Finnish Landrace aka Finnsheep), I noticed some dark spots. When I carefully pulled the top layer of wool away, I found this:
Two dead bumble bees and two pupas. At least I think they’re empty pupas, please correct me if I’m wrong! Anyway, not a good place to make a nest, as the bumble bees get caught in the wool. They also seem to have been attacked by something. I have no idea what that predator may have been. It wasn’t easy to get into the box.
I think they are what’s called the Large Earth Bumble Bee, common in many places in Europe. We had a lot of different bumble bees last summer, and obviously some of them have tried to make nests in our attic.
There was still nectar in the wool, I hope you can see it in the photo:
It’s sticky, but I didn’t taste it. Probably sweet.
I’ve wanted to have bumble bees as pets ever since I was a child. Every summer I want to stroke those wonderful insects, but I have some bad memories from earlier years that make me take a step back. So I don’t stroke them, even if the temptation is strong.
The fox that lives close to our house is having problem with last year’s fur. It’s changing into a bright red summer fur, itchy process!
Half way through. Brownish-gray old fur and new sparkling red. The tail looks quite unhappy a.t.m., no much fur at all.
ETA: I have looked closer at the pictures and also read about Sarcoptes scabie. It seems quite clear to me now that this fox is in fact very ill and will probably die. So it’s not at all a funny thing any more. In fact, I hope the hunters in the village will shoot him. We has foxes with this parasite some ten years ago, but I had forgotten what it looks like.