Thursday, 11 July 2013

No Wow at Pow, but a Ding Dong at Far Pasture . . .

Pow Hill Country Park on Derwent Reservoir last summer gave my my first sighting of a Golden-ringed Dragonfly for many a year. Certainly a dragonfly with the 'wow' factor so went up with the Birdman today to see if we could repeat the success.
Not on your nelly though, a pretty fruitless trek to be honest, a couple of glimpses of common hawker the only dragonfly sightings on site. All the highlights came in mammalian form, with a cracking stoat running across the road ahead of us, and two superb red squirrels showing brilliantly by the top car park.

We returned to the valley and popped in on Far Pasture  where we had much better success with dragonflies. Now 2 male Broad-bodied chasers on the forbidden pond, 3 four-spots and a few teneral common darters (first of the year) seen. Just a few each of common blue and azure damsels and two blue-tails made up the numbers of odonata.

When the second bbc arrived there was an almighty tussle lasting a good few minutes, the fighting pair zipping around the tree cover, skimming the pond at breakneck speed and rising high in the air to continue the dogfight.
Interesting because such was the intensity of the battle it suggests the resident male has successfully mated here, as they only tend to show any territorial behaviour after mating, when they become much more aggressive and will win around 90% of battles to defend their 'domain' while waiting for wandering females to arrive. They only tend to lose the battle if they allow the other male to mate on their territory first so the 'intruder' then becomes more aggressive too.

Still King of the Castle - For Now ?
Just another insight into what makes them such fascinating creatures. Cheers.


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