Monday, 24 May 2010

Sunny and warm again this morning, and whilst walking to work I saw the first GREY WAGTAIL (70) of the month, it was on the stream that runs adjacent the College grounds, just two more new may species needed now to equal the record May count :-) Also of note this morning was seeing recently fledged GOLDCRESTS, at least 4 young were being fed in an Oak tree in the College Grounds.

This afternoon became very warm, and I decided i'd go over to the ponds in the College Gardens to try and find some Damsel / Dragonflies, as trying to find birds in the hot sun would not be very productive. I have to pass through Migrant Alley to get to the College, and everything was still and hot, the only birds out on the fields were the 'panting' ROOKS and a few WOODPIGEONS, however the KESTREL was as busy as ever hunting around the Greenhouses, and a Small Copper butterfly was also found.

Just before reaching the ponds I checked up on the SPOTTED FLYCATCHERS, as they weren't far away, I found them both calling, and then a chase ensued, which might have involved a thrid bird, i'll have to keep a careful watch in the coming days.

At the ponds I was greeted by loads of Blue and Red damselflies and a female Broad Bodied Chaser. Below are some photo's of them, but first here's the Small Copper butterfly

First Odenata - a Female Broad Bodied Chaser

These two pics below, I believe, are Blue tailed damselflies, but I dont mind being corrected by the more knowledgable, should I be wrong :-)

last damselfly is an azure Blue - I reckon :-)
After I'd got too hot, I walked back home across Migrant Alley, and saw a COMMON BUZZARD and a HOBBY circling over, very nice!


Anonymous said...

Warren, all the Odanata are correct except the 3rd one, which i think is a "blue form" female Azure.

Warren Baker said...

could it not be a female common blue Dean? the eyes are linked by a bar ?

Anonymous said...

According to my book "The Dragonflies of GB & Ireland" all the Damsels eyes are linked by a bar at the front.
It was the tailend that i was looking at. said...

Magnific shots!! Congratulations!!!


Derek Faulkner said...


I also had a splendid Blue Damsel at my garden pond this afternoon, just feet away from my sunbed as I enjoyed this superb weather, if only we could get this hot weather non-stop for another six months because its nice to see other wildlife as well as birds.

Greenie said...

Warren ,
Well done with the Grey wagtail .
Far be it from me to be arguementative , but -
Your Broad Bodied Chaser could well be a female , but could just as easily be an immature male , as all immature BBCs are that gold/yellow colour , the females remain that colour but darker and the males 'blue up' as they mature , remember the pictures I posted last year ?
No problem with the firt damselfly , Blue Tailed .
The second one is inconclusive , as the light blue on the end segments is broken , not solid as in first .
I say that the third is a male Azure , albeit the 'whisky tumbler' marking on the first segment is not quite right , I cannot make it anything else .
Disagreeing with Dean's blue form female , as that has all black segments on the end of the abdomen and the marking on segment one is also wrong for the female Azure .
Just read your comment , positively not female Common Blue , no 'golf ball on tee' on segment 1 .
Like the Small Copper .

ShySongbird said...

Hee Hee, these ID's get more complicated by the minute :)

Lovely photos of them all anyway! Well done on your May count, perhaps you will beat your record.

Warren Baker said...

Cheers for the damsel/chaser input greenie, now you know why I stick to birds :-)

Monika said...

Your butterfly photos are really encouraging me to keep trying for some of my own!

Kerry said...

You have such a wonderful diversity of wildlife in your area and it is so nice to see the dragonflies as we get so few of them around here. Great also to hear that the Goldcrests are breeding - here's hoping for a milder winter so that more manage to survive.