A fulfilling week with better success locating Scarce Chasers at Testwood Lakes and Ramsdown Forest just over the county border. The females in particular are magnificent in their fresh vibrant colours.
Young males start out similar, if nowhere near as vibrant, before obtaining their predominantly blue colouring
On Wednesday I visited a few favourite locations in the forest and as well as hundreds of Keeled Skimmers was rewarded with my first sightings of the Golden-ringed Dragonfly
On Thursday I spent an afternoon at Crockford Stream, always a reliable site for diverse species activity. Southern Damsels were in abundance along with Beautiful Demoiselles, Large Reds, Azures, Keeled Skimmers, Broad-bodied Chasers, Emperors and Golden-ringed.
There was also a single male Hairy Dragonfly patrolling the stream, an unusual sighting at this location and far from it’s usual haunts. Unfortunately the sighting was all too brief and no photo opportunity presented itself, however the same individual was spotted the previous day by my friend Doug Overton, who did at least manage a photograph or two whcih can be seen here:-
On Friday I walked from Mill Lawn following Ober Water up as far as Markway Bridge and besides the usual Beautiful Demoiselles, Large Reds, Azures, Southerns, Keeled Skimmers and Broad-bodied Chasers there were also Golden-ringed and probably most surprising a colony of White-legged Damselflies at the far end among the heather
There were also teneral Small Reds around, but no mature specimens. A week or two should see them in reasonable numbers as this site has proved reliable in the past. I did also look for Scarce Blue-tails among the feed-in channels, but only normal Blue-tails were present.
I strongly believe that the Ober Water has as much diversity as Crockford although spread out a lot more and is well worth a visit.