Saturday 26 July 2014

At My Garden Pond.

At my garden pond Common Darters,Azure Damselflies and ovipositing Emperors are the main sights now.
Several male Common Darters are dotted around the garden while a female blue form Emperor seems to visit the pond every day to lay her eggs.
Great to see a Grass Snake in the pond today too.

Tuesday 22 July 2014

One A Day.

The Emperor Dragonfly seems to be ovipositing almost daily at my garden pond.The blue form female pictured below was seen yesterday and yet another on the water today.

Monday 21 July 2014

More Small Red-eyes.

A return visit to a nearby garden pond to see the Small Red-eyed Damselflies again.I was particularly hopeful of photographing the females,either individually or  while mating.As it was I was only able to find them while they did the latter.

Sunday 20 July 2014

Emergent Darters.

During the last week several Common Darters have emerged from my garden pond which has coincided with the appearance of the adults.
The individual pictured below took its first flight from the pond side this morning and ended up in struggling a spiders web not too far away.I managed to retrieve it and hopefully it will make a full recovery


Thursday 17 July 2014

A Little Red-eyed Stunner.

A garden pond in the village of Shalfleet has a good number of Small Red-eyed Damselflies.As mentioned in an earlier post these delicate damsels have only colonized the UK in the past few years but now seem to be well established here.
The males spend most of their time sitting on a lily pad awaiting a female, and also having territorial disputes with other nearby males.

Tuesday 15 July 2014

Arrival of the Common Darter.

Over the last several days I have had at least three emergent Common Darters from my garden pond and with that adult Darters have arrived to take up positions around the pond.I would expect a lot of disputes between the males now as they vie for the best spot to attach the females.
Yet another Emperor Dragonfly oviposited into the pond plants today.this time a blue form female.

Monday 14 July 2014

Hawking Hawkers.

Up to six Southern Hawkers this morning at Walters Copse,Newtown,all along the woodland paths.As well as several immature males and females there was also a colourful mature male.


Still More Next year.

Another Emperor visited my garden pond yesterday and unlike the blue form female of last Thursday this one was the usual green colour.
She made several sessions of ovipositing into the pond plants while taking the occasional rest on the lily pad.

Friday 11 July 2014

Beautiful Summer Colour.

A visit to Clamerkin NT pond  at Newtown this morning under very blue skies at first but the cloud soon came to curtail much dragonfly activity.Still I come across this very colourful female Blue-tailed Damselfly which is one of my favourite damselflies because of the various colour forms.
Although the larger dragonflies were not to be seen there were many Ruddy Darters and Emerald Damselflies.

Thursday 10 July 2014

More Next Year.

At my garden pond this afternoon I noticed another Emperor Dragonfly ovipositing into the frogbit plants.
This is the third female I have seen laying her eggs and I am sure they have not been the only ones.With at least seven emergents this year  I am hoping for even more next season.

Tuesday 8 July 2014

'Hanging On In'.

A return visit today to perhaps the only remaining site for Keeled Skimmers on the Isle of Wight.Hemmed between the high cliffs and the beach this site lays precariously vulnerable to the erosion of the land and the ferocity of the sea.
These acidic small pools and runnels are covered in reeds, where male Skimmers defend their territories and await any females interested in mating.The immature females are a dazzling yellow which becomes a dull bronze with maturity.

A beetle found on this landslip is the Cliff Tiger Beetle,Cylindera germanica.It is a rare and impressive creature and one of five species of Tiger Beetle in the UK.
Cylindera germanica is found only on the warm,south facing soft cliffs of Devon,Dorset,and the Isle of Wight.
It is a fast running insect and catches its prey with its large and formidable jaws.The larvae are pit- predators living in burrows in the damp sand where they ambush their victims and pull them into the burrow to be eaten.

Wednesday 2 July 2014

Another Summer Stroll.

The fine hot weather continues and just the day for a walk along the stream at Southford.Good numbers of Banded Demoiselles here but no Golden-ringed Dragonflies stationed on the reeds yet.However one seen in flight patrolling the length of the stream and also a male hunting and devouring its prey.At the lake still plenty of Common Blue and Blue-tailed Damselflies
Photograph of the male Banded Demoiselle very kindly supplied by Barb Close.

Hanging On.

The Keeled Skimmer is not a common dragonfly on the Isle of Wight as it is found only in two or three coastal sites.These isolated pockets are situated on cliff landslip where small acidic pools have formed due to the coastal erosion.(see blog entry KEELED SKIMMERS AT WHALE CHINE of the 5th February 2013).
A very wet winter combined with ferocious gales have caused  extensive damage to these sites due to some sections disappearing into the sea completely and cliff falls burying this specialized  habitat It seems that maybe only one site is now suitable for this Skimmer.

Tuesday 1 July 2014

Back For Another Look.

As the Red-veined Darter is such a rarity here we decided to return to the reservoir site visited last week and just like our previous visit the Red-veins were not to be seen until late morning ,around eleven o'clock.Again we only saw males and no tenerals.
The reservoir is large and much of the bank is still bare ground so Black-tailed Skimmers are numerous.There were several mating pairs as well as the odd exuviae from recently emerged individuals.