Monday, 9 April 2012

DragonHunting - Season 2012 Preview

Well, here we are in April, and by the end of the month the first damsels should be appearing, so with the new DragonHunting season almost upon us, it's time to plan a few quests and set a few targets.

On my local patch of Gateshead this will involve filling in a few gaps left over from last season, namely observing and photographing black-tailed skimmer and male broad-bodied chaser in the early part of the season, and a female migrant hawker in the latter part. Also I aim to get some better shots of banded demoiselle and black darter for my photo-file.

In the close season I have been out and about locating new waterways to visit this year (as well as the old favourites) just to record which dragons and damsels are found at lesser watched sites, and one task in particular will be to try and find the elusive Golden-ringed Dragonfly in Gateshead. I only have one site in mind for this, but will go into more detail at a later date.

Having gone into diagnostic ID features of the common local species last year I'll only add to that if I think necessary and as I more or less cleaned up on those I wanted to record, this year my quest for new dragons will hopefully take on a wider search. Species which can be found relatively local include Hairy Hawker and Brown Hawker, Golden-ringed (if not on my patch) and possibly Beautiful Demoiselle and Variable Damsel. I've already started investigating potential sites for all of these so will be happy if I can connect with at least three of them. And finally if the chance arises I wouldn't mind a trip over to Cumbria for the splendid White-faced Darter.

Plenty to go at then, so weather-wise here's hoping for a better summer than last, with a lot more sun-drenched days to make my quests just that little bit easier.