Thursday, 18 June 2015

Southern Hawkers and Common Darters appearing

My planned BDS field trip to Yardley Chase was a washout with constant drizzle all day. Five brave enthusiasts put the rain out of their minds and joined me for the day hoping to catch sight of a perched Downy Emerald. While no Emeralds were found, we did recover a few exuviae to the delight of Trish who needed one for her collection. While we braved the weather, so did a handful of emerging Four-spotted Chasers. One attracted much interest to the photographers (photo below) because we found it protecting itself under an Iris leaf in a very photogenic position. We found several more exuviae, including four Southern Hawkers, the first of the year.

Returning to the Chase, I found a few Downy Emeralds at territory but numbers appear to be well down compared with previous years, perhaps due to poor weather during their main emergence window.

White-legged Damselflies are now in good numbers on the Ise, with adults recorded at Burton Latimer Pocket Park, Harrowden Lane and south Wellingborough.

At Titchmarsh Nature Reserve, Scarce Chasers are  now at territory and Black-tailed Skimmers are appearing along with the usual Damselflies and Demoiselles. Emperors are also cropping up at territory after their relatively short maturation time.

Chris Emary reports the first Common Darter at Syresham.

Four-spotted Chaser emerging in rain

Male White-legged Damselfly, River Ise

Immature Male Southern Hawker

Blue-tailed Damselflies

Broad-bodied Chaser

Azure Damselflies (note the mites infesting the female)

Male Large Red Damselfly

Downy Emerald