Friday, 19 August 2016

Beach Blues.

Although the dazzling  colour of the male Scarlet Darters was obvious along the stream that flowed,at least during the winter months, across the beach into the bay  at Chrysi Ammoudia on the Greek Island of Thassos,there are also other dragonflies to see here.Not least,the powder blue of the mature male Keeled Skimmers which, in this part of Southern Europe are the subspecies anceps. These skimmers tend to restrict themselves to the dense reeds just a short distance upstream away from the beach.They are a common sight here  and are seen in any small area of cleared reeds and  small pools.
On the other hand a very similar skimmer,the Southern Skimmer Orthetrum brunneum,is a species of more open ground.It is another common dragonfly in Southern Europe although until last week I had never seen one in the field. In the  summer months where this stream opens onto the beach a  large pool is formed,pictured below, and it was on the sandy bank of the pool that a male Southern Skimmer was spotted patrolling the waters edge.