Have you ever heard of a Robins Pincushion?
While walking along Perth Town Lade
this week with the intention of taking some photographs of rose hips in the hedgerows I noticed something strange growing on the stems of the dog roses Rosa canina
. Strange growths with fibrous like tentacles were clustered on some of the stems like little sea anemones. I have walked past these roses for nearly a decade now and I’m amazed that something like this in nature has never caught my attention before.
|macro of the bedeguar gall|
This is a bedeguar gall commonly known as a Robin’s Pincushion.
Life Cycle of a Gall Wasp
Earlier in the season the gall wasp Diplolepis rosae laid some eggs in a stem which caused a chemical distortion. That distortion in the stem has now turned into this eye catching spherical ball of pinkish moss. Inside that mass there maybe 40 or 50 chambers where the larvae of the gall wasp are growing. Then over the winter this gall will change colour to brown and become very dry looking and in May little gall wasps will hatch out.
|a cluster of galls on a dog rose stem|
Why the name Robin?
The gall has been named after Robin Goodfellow – a mischievous sprite in English folklore otherwise known as Will O’ The Wisp and Puck.
|later in autumn|
What interesting things in nature have you spotted while out and about?