Wednesday, 30 September 2015

Summer gives way to Autumn

As we enter the start of true autumn (not the arbitrary "metrological autumn" that starts on 1 September), the decline in the season is well underway and visits to our wetland sites generally show only a couple of species. Migrant Hawkers are still around in good numbers, with adults recorded on the Nene at Thrapston and around the main Town Lake there, the River Ise at Burton Latimer, Ditchford and Irthlingborough Greenway. All these sites also show plenty of Common Darters, with many ovipositing pairs recorded this week at the Irthlingborough site. Today at Irthlingborough, I also saw a make Southern Hawker do a fly past through the ditch. I am hoping to see more here in the next few weeks as this is a potentially great site for them. At Thrapston on Sunday, I found a single pristine male Common Blue Damselfly that I estimated had emerged within the last two weeks.

I was able to visit Summer Leys last Friday, to try out my new 600mm lens on some birds, and after a good collection of shots of a Little Egret, the short walk from the hide to the car park showed many Migrant Hawkers flying in the late afternoon sun, and several Common Darters basking on the fence posts. The 600mm only focusses to 4.5m which doesn't give great magnification for dragonflies, so these shots are cropped a little. As the evenings draw in and the sun gets lower in the sky, this is a more frequent sight on sunny days.