Friday 31 August 2018

Southern Emeralds Still Bright & Beautiful.

Today's visit to Bouldnor Forest ponds was somewhat marred by an extensive dark cloud that lingered for the duration over the Southern Emerald Damselfly site.The temperature was a mild 19 degrees but now and again light rain fell and not surprisingly dragonfly activity was very low.
However a walk around the two dry scrapes yielded a total of nine Southern Emeralds,all of them mature males.


Wednesday 22 August 2018

Choosing the Right Spot.

The Southern Hawker has visited the garden pond over the last several seasons to oviposit.It is a treat to watch the female as she busily glides around the pond looking for the best places to lay her eggs.
Yesterday I witnessed two visits,the first in the early afternoon and a second much later when the female laid eggs in the bank facing the pond and then into reed leaves and stems.These are ideal spots  compared with other Southern Hawkers that seem to try and oviposit into anything from a large rock to my leg.
The photos below follow a short sequence of  ovipositing into a reed where the female uses the ovipositor to deposit her egg.

Tuesday 21 August 2018

Southern Hawkers & Southern Emeralds.

Following a cloudy start to the day the sun soon came out and by midday the temperature was a warm 25 degrees celsius.At Bouldnor Forest ponds several dragonfly species were on show.In particular the Southern Hawker along with Common and Ruddy Darters.Of course the main attraction was yet again the Southern Emerald Damselflies with seven males seen at the two breeding ponds together with a copulating pair.

Tuesday 14 August 2018

Southern Emeralds Still Active at our Local Site.

The dry heat of the last couple of months has now gone and today was a comfortable 22 celicus.However the occasional cloudly spell did mean that there were some cool  periods.Nevertheless activity at our Southern Emerald site was excellent and perhaps at its peak now, with many male damselflies in evidence together with one or two copulating pairs.In addition females were busy ovipositing into any suitable reed stems.The count of individuals today was the highest of the season, so we will hopefully look forward to the continuation of  this breeding colony next year.

Sunday 5 August 2018

Southern Hawker at the Garden Pond.

It is always satisfying to observe dragonflies and damselflies ovipositing into my garden pond and today was a special treat to see a female Southern Hawker exploring the pond for egg laying spots.This very attractive hawker is one of my favourites,not only to see their fabulous colours but also to enjoy the females enthusiastic behaviour.She will always oviposit into pondside plants or mossy material on the bank.As I have watched this and as happened today, the hawker will land on any convenient object such as my leg and attempt to lay an egg.


Wednesday 1 August 2018

A Long Season for our Southern Emeralds.

It will take more a day of rain as experienced this week to dampen the breeding pools at our Southern Emerald site.Yesterday in rising temperatures they looked as dry as ever but this species is used to these conditions,so I was pleased to find three Southern Emeralds,two males and a female at the pools.The first damselflies were seen on the first of June and it will be interesting to see how long their season will last.