07 July, 2013


After that last diversion, back to more regular fare...

So, all this 'ot sunny weather meant another Bug Hunt was on the cards today. First up was another trip to Bystock, where last weekend had been reported many Small Red Damselflies. After last year's failure - due to pesky gusts of wind blowing the little git out of my focal plane [grr] - I'm determined to try again.

There was a whole heap of odonata at the res, with swarms of Emperors and 4-Spots battling over a layer of Azures and Common Blues. No less than 3 terrapins were trying to bask on one bit of wood [some balancing required!] and the pool now has an extra deterrent to stop bathers, anglers, and boaters... a crocodile!! :D

I'm not kidding. It's green.

Isn't it wonderful? :)

Getting up to the Small Red pools, the Keeled Skimmers were out in force but there was not a sign of any Small Red Damselflies! Plenty of Large Reds, some of which were quite dinky little things - so small Large Red Damsels, then - but none of what I was after... Bugger.

Keeled Skimmer strikes a pose

After much searching of every possible nook they might be hiding in, I accepted my dip and went looking for butterflies.. I found some, very pretty little things too, this one being notable;

Getting it to sit still at all - let alone long enough to stalk, frame, and focus - was an exercise in mobile patience. 

 but then the first Horsefly of the year found me. Repellent 1 Rainbow-eyed Bugger 0, but I took the hint and legged it before she demanded a rematch...

Time for rations, so I headed back to the main pool and plonked down on a shady bench [so civilised!]. I was wondering if any hawkers were on the wing yet, and sitting and watching for a while would be a good way to see. Answer: no. But a Downy Emerald made an appearance, so not a total waste.

I then went on to a site for Southern Damselflies, where despite everything seeming to be right, I dipped utterly. Have I missed them again? As with Bystock, indeed even more so than Bystock, there were lots of Keeled Skimmers on the wing. Also a worn but still pretty Green Hairstreak that actually let me photo it! Ta-da.....

Looking much less green in this than it's true amazing metallic emerald 

Both locations had mature Golden-ringed Dragonflies and immature Black-tailed Skimmers [though only one of each].

I kept half an eye upwards, but no southbound Frigatebirds to report.....

[[P.S. Anybody spot the dragonfly? No, not the KS, the other one. Can you find it? ]]

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