One of the benefits of an un-seasonably warm October has been some lush cold mornings, beautiful sunrises and the emergence of mother natures more ‘rusty’ palate of Autumnal colour. On the downside is the almost Biblical infestation of ‘Cluster flies’… These pesky little pests are most unwelcome. They don’t pose too much of a threat in that they aren’t trying to eat the collection, but they have a very short life span in the adult fly form, so there are lot’s of little bodies to vacuum up. ( As you can imagine that clashes somewhat with the overall theme of a room…) And when I say lots, I mean loads. Mostly in our Balcony and Tapestry rooms and our mysterious ‘8a’ store room… (It’s only mysterious because it was a room I had not been into, and my overactive imagination had decided it was a little on the sinister side, expecting on my first visit to see mist and a green light coming from underneath the door…) Turns out, not so sinister… Just a store room. With windows inundated with flies. Some dead, some dozy and some very fit and healthy and very good at totally avoiding the nozzle of the vacuum cleaner I was using…. I’m pretty sure I heard one of them giggle as I failed to get the last of them….


About arlingtoncourtblog

Welcome to my blog! I've been keeping it to document my training as a Conservation Assistant for the National Trust at Dyrham Park. View all posts by arlingtoncourtblog

2 responses to “

  • Charlotte Owen

    Hi Rob, enjoying reading your experiences of venturing into conservation and hearing about life at another Trust property.
    Something that many of our visitors to Belton don’t always realise about cluster flies, until we tell them, is that, whilst they don’t eat the collection, the dead bodies do provide food for other hungry pests such as the woolly bear. Therefore removing the dead bodies helps to reduce a food source for other merry munchers!

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