Monday, 27 June 2016

Things are still quiet out there in dragonfly land, although they are still going about their business in the short periods of sunny weather we are seeing. I had a bit if a Scarce Chaser hunt on Sunday, after a visit to Wadenhoe last Friday where I found 40+ Scarce Chasers, many males with mating scars so they have been active despite the weather. Dragonflies have survived 100s' of million years so a period of poor weather shouldn't affect them too much. At Stanwick Lakes, I found 20 Scarce Chasers on the navigable section of the Nene at the back of the reserve. Emperors are appearing at territory now, with adults seen at Wadenhoe and Stanwick. I am hopeful that the Nene at Summer Leys will at some point host these Chasers, but on Sunday I could find none in amoung the thousands of Banded Demoiselle, Common Blue Damselflies, Red-eyes and a few Emperors. I enjoyed watching an ovipositing pair of Red-eyes, where they both completely submerged while the female laid her eggs safely inside the floating plants. The eventually emerged and flew off a few minutes later.

Mark Piper reports the first Ruddy Darter at Stanford Reservoir on 25th, and Doug Goddard spotted the first Southern Hawker at Salcey Forest on 26th.

Today I returned to the Greenway at Irthlingborough hoping to find more Variable Damselflies. I found none, but did spot a male Small Red-eyed Damselfly. I found a good population here last year.

Old female Scarce Chaser

Old female Scarce Chaser

Black-tailed Skimmer

Four-spotted Chaser