Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Damsels and Dragons.

As any local naturalist, who lives in the county, will tell you, we are very impoverished when it comes to insects. We get very few Dragonflies and Butterflies. But that doesn't stop me looking. The other day when we were out looking at Damsels I was frustrated when I came back and found that ST had great pictures of Azure Damselfly on his blog. This was made worse when you read that it was taken in Ashington near where I work.

There was nothing for it, Ashington Community Woodland was going to get a visit. Yesterday I struggled to find the ponds let alone the insects, but today I had more lunchtime to wait and watch.

I stood at the small overgrown pond above and was very suprised when the first thing I saw was a large chaser sp. Through binoculars I guessed that it would be Four-spotted Chaser, but then it was chased from its perch by an altogether bigger beast, that I suspect was a female Broad bodied Chaser! A very rare creature indeed up here. Unfortunately it didn't linger, but I will try and be more prepared next time...

Above - Four Spotted Chaser. I saw two of these together eventually.

Above - Top - Azure Damselfly. Cheers Steve! Look closely ( click picture) at the segment next to the tail tip. It has an amount of black in the blue. Then check the segment where the wings join the body. Here is a thin U or H shape.
Bottom - Common Blue Damselfly. Second tail segment is solid blue and the wings / body segment has an 'ace of spades' mark. Two very difficult insects to seperate in the field.

Above - Maybe the commonest, Large Red Damselfly.

A great lunchtime.

Oh and I forgot, on the way to work this morning a nice male Marsh Harrier flew over the road near the Boulmer Radar Base...


ST said...

I had no dragons, must be because of the warm weather.

There is a short cut to the pond though. It all depends, where your willing to leave your car.

Warren Baker said...

Well sorted out BB. Damsels are difficult to ID!!
I thought you must be short of bird action up there, if you were watching damsels, until the Marsh Harrier comment! send one this way.

Anonymous said...

have just relised your china report was on their what wonderfull birds must have been a fantastic trip apart from the quakes of course did you feel them.
ps tell nigel to have a name/url on his blog cos i can not leave any comments on his blog ive tried joining google but password never works

oldcrow61 said...

tut, tut, that st, and right where you work, lol. Happy to see that you did get some great pictures after all.

Blyth Birder said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Stewart said...

Hi all,
St - Cheers
WB - Its not that we're short of birds, its just that this is the only time for insects!
F - Ta Chris, Nigel might read this comment...
OC - Its all friendly chat... :)
CD - Eh!