TO most people, insects are just irritating pests but after Bill Indge’s most enthusiastic and enlightening talk his audience was converted.

Compared to mammals and birds, insects are relatively easy to find and study but there are around 23,000 species in the UK, many of which don’t have common names.

Using photographs, Bill took members through the seasons, concentrating on insects that can be seen in and around Alfrick.

In winter one is limited to studying insects which reside in buildings such as cluster flies, mosquitoes, green lacewing, harlequin ladybirds, daddy long legged spiders and silverfish.

As the year progresses and the weather warms insects become much more prolific and it is noticeable that certain insects are attracted to particular plants.

Hogweed attracts earwigs, thick kneed flower beetles, soldier beetles and many spiders, including the crab spider, while nettles are the favourite of moths, aphids, hoverfly larvae, bush crickets and nettle weevils.

One tends to think that insects have it all their own way but that is far from the truth. Many are parasitised by the larvae of other insects and many suffer from fungal infections, particularly if they cluster together. Insects also provide the main diet of certain bird and mammal species.