Thursday, 10 September 2015

Hardly a last Hurrah . . .

With the sun shining and chores done early, off I went for a Dragonhunt. First target Thornley Woods Pond for some Southern Hawker action. Alas, it didn't work out. One male turned up just a couple of minutes in so my hopes built up, but after a quick search of the far margins he was off and didn't return.
Two skirmishing common darter males kept me entertained for a short while as I tried in vain to snap one hovering, this being my best attempt :

If you think this is a rubbish flight shot
you should have seen those I binned
I'd intended to stay for an hour regardless but there were no further dragonfly sightings at all so I gave up forty minutes in and trekked down to Far Pasture wondering just what had happened to TWP. More emergence this year but my visits have all ended in disappointment, just another crap stat for this summer or a sign of decline, only time will tell.

Far Pasture was much better for common darters number-wise. Great to see so many mating wheels coming up from the fields and tandem pairs on the pond, a conservative estimate being 40 individuals. Also on the pond 2 Sth Hawker and 2 Mig hawker males but all flighty and brief sightings only.
No damsels now, might have expected a few emeralds to be still on the wing but nothing. Nowt settled close enough for a photo either so quality of sightings was poor even though quantity was good.
Things were getting so bad I even resorted to taking a picture of a nuthatch while chatting to Roly in the car park, I mean, photographing birds in dragonfly season, what's my world coming to?

Back on the road the Ruddy Darter was in his usual place but didn't hang around for photos either, no hawker sightings at all in the fields so all was left for me to do was see if I could get some killer shots of the darters on the fence. This didn't prove easy either but here are the best of what I got :

At least someone was happy

keep smiling

Sorry did I give you a fright?

The look that says it all

Don't know how many dragonfly days are left now. Obviously I won't be getting any new species so all that remains is to try and get the best shots possible of what's left before the weather turns to total shite. Depressing ain't it :-(  

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