Saturday 30 May 2020

Southern Emerald's on the Up.

Arriving at Bouldnor Forest ponds this afternoon,I went directly to the Southern Emerald scrapes.As mentioned in my last report they are looking completely arid as a result of virtually no rain for the last two months.
After a brief inspection of the small scrape I made for the larger and immediately noticed a male Southern Emerald just a few feet along the path.Eventually,after some time  investigating the two scrapes, three more individuals were seen among the reeds and grasses that cover the large scrape.Unfortunately they quickly evaded me and disappeared into the greenery.

Monday 25 May 2020

Southern Emerald Damselfly On the Wing at Yarmouth.

Today's visit to Bouldnor ponds at Yarmouth was spent wholly at the two scrapes where our colony of Southern Emerald Damselflies have bred for the last several seasons.Since my last visit  on the 20th May both scrapes have dried up with no visible signs of water.The larger seems to have dried completely although the reeds are still green and I am sure that there is moisture underneath. The second smaller scrape looks to be slightly deeper with plenty of dead and decaying matter so there must also be water below.
Immediately on arrival I disturbed a male Emperor Dragonfly and a male Four-spotted Chaser.The former only flew a short distance before finally flying away.Seeing no other species at the first small scrape I moved on the a second larger one,just a short distance away.Very pleased to see a single teneral Ruddy Darter among the reeds here.A first of the season.The only other species seen was a Blue-tailed Damselfly rufescens.
After an hour or more viewing the two scrapes I was finally rewarded with the sight of an immature female Southern Emerald fluttering away from the larger scrape into the surrounding gorse.

Wednesday 20 May 2020

Spring Hot's Up.

Today was perhaps the warmest of the year so far with a reading of 28C on the car temperature gauge.Another trip to Bouldnor Forest in anticipation of the first Southern Emerald Damselfly proved to be too optimistic and I suspect that all being well, the first should be seen within the next week.The two breeding scrapes were as much as they usually are at this time of the year.Both still showing patchy water  in their centres.
At the other shallow ponds of this site, Broad-bodied Chasers were of course the main event.However my first Emperor Dragonfly was a welcome sight as I observed an adult male patrolling one of the ponds.Along with the male Broad-bodied Chasers was also an adult male Four-spotted Chaser.He regularly vied with the male Broad-bodied Chasers for the best position on the pond.Although common on the mainland the Four-spot is rather restricted on the Isle of Wight and not seen all that often.

Maturing male Brosd-bodied Chaser

Saturday 16 May 2020

Back to Nature.

After a seven week lockdown in England it was good to get out into the countryside for the second time this week.At Shalfleet the Beautiful Demoiselles are on the wing and along the short stretch of wooded stream away from the village I counted 17 males and 10 females.Six were adult males and it was good to see some of them 'dancing' in aerial combat over a sunny spot.

Monday 4 May 2020

Another Broad-bodied Chaser Arrives.

With a change in the weather for the worst since the end of the month of April, species recorded in my garden have been disappointing with only Large Red Damselflies and Broad-bodied Chasers to be seen. Today during a sunny period another immature male Broad-bodied Chaser appeared in the garden close to the pond.When disturbed it flew strongly into the flower border where he landed on the seed pods of our honesty plant.