The hot weather has really encouraged the Odonata to emerge - literally, as the aquatic larva finally crawls up a stem through the water surface and the winged adult breaks out of its final skin (or exuvia). Today at Iden fishponds I was surprised to find two male Downy Emeralds patrolling a sheltered bay, but they were too quick to photograph. More obliging was this male Four-spotted Chaser at Iden Moat. This is one of the easiest British dragonflies to photograph, often basking in full view and allowing very close approach. Also this morning, my first Common Blue Damselfly of the year near Castle Water, and on Sunday a female Broad-bodied Chaser on a pool by Houghton Wood.
Archive for May 13th, 2008
A group of year 8 students from Thomas Peacocke Community College visited the nature reserve today and found this enormous group of squid eggs on the shore. The eggs would normally be “glued” to weed or rocks, so this stranded mass has little chance of hatching.
Lots of Red Kites have been seen in Sussex over the last week - even a flock of 9 reported at Northiam on Sunday. I was beginning to feel that I was the only person in the county not to have seen one until I noticed one flapping and gliding languidly over Guestling Thorn at 07.10 this morning, while I was out in TQ81M, doing the last of my Early Visits for the Breeding Atlas. I saw several Kites after that, which all turned out to be Herring Gulls, and felt sufficiently encouraged to re-interpret a Kestrel as a Red-footed Falcon (another species drifting westwards in large numbers). (It did look very dusky in the early morning light…) Read the rest of this entry »
The moth morning at Pestalozzi on Saturday 10th May was a great success, with ten people turning up to investigate the contents of the moth trap (biscuits and coffee kindly provided by Raymond and Maureen Kemp, who also allowed use to use their back garden for the event!). Thirty-two species were trapped, with the highlights being around 30 Cockchafer beetle (below), Puss Moth, Poplar Hawk, Orange Footman and a wide range of ‘prominents‘.
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