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UK dragonflies and damselflies, 2014 (1 Viewer)

aeshna5

Well-known member
Black Darter reported on the BDS website 25 June at Thursley. I think that's all the "standard" species up and running now, except for Willow Emerald. Unless I've forgotton something? No mention of azure hawker or irish damsel on the BDS site, but I suspect that reflects lack of observers rather than them not being out yet.

Meanwhile, over on UKdragonflies, there are some stunning photos of a Southern Emerald damsel from a new site in Kent. It's a private site, but still intriguing and offering the suggestion that the species may get established. With Willow Emerald already established in the area, Reculver seems to be becoming the place to be for new species.

Willow Emeralds have been mentioned at sites in Essex + also at Minsmere.
 

Adrian_P

Well-known member
Of the "non-standard" species (=new colonists), obviously Southern Emerald Damselfly and Willow Emerald Damselfly are out now. I've heard no news of Southern Migrant Hawker or Dainty Damselfly as yet, though as the latter may have gone from its public site(?), that doesn't necessarily mean too much. Both species should however be flying now, so anyone in south Essex or north Kent should keep their eyes open!

Adrian (BDS Migrant Dragonfly Project)
 

Connor Rand

Norwich resident, Holme devotee
Hi all, I'm heading to the New Forest for the first time this weekend. I know there are some sites mentioned on this thread but would be great to have some more info about general good sites and species. I'm particularly keen to see and photograph Golden-ringed Dragonfly, Southern Damselfly, Scarce Blue-tailed Damselfly, Small Red Damselfly, White-legged Damselfly and Beautiful Demoiselle. Any help really gratefully appreciated. Also, how far would I have to travel to see Brilliant Emerald?
 

Farnboro John

Well-known member
Hi all, I'm heading to the New Forest for the first time this weekend. I know there are some sites mentioned on this thread but would be great to have some more info about general good sites and species. I'm particularly keen to see and photograph Golden-ringed Dragonfly, Southern Damselfly, Scarce Blue-tailed Damselfly, Small Red Damselfly, White-legged Damselfly and Beautiful Demoiselle. Any help really gratefully appreciated. Also, how far would I have to travel to see Brilliant Emerald?

Latchmore Brook near North Gorley holds all of those except maybe White-legged Damselfly. Access from Ogdens car park, walk East along the brook for between half and 3/4 of a mile until there is an obvious bog on the north side for the damselflies - Golden-ringed Dragon and Beautiful Demoiselle all the way along the brook.

See also post#61 above.

Brilliant Emerald you could do at Esher Common or along the Basingstoke Canal near Aldershot.

John
 

Swindon Addick

Registered User
Supporter
Wales
Latchmore Brook near North Gorley holds all of those except maybe White-legged Damselfly. Access from Ogdens car park, walk East along the brook for between half and 3/4 of a mile until there is an obvious bog on the north side for the damselflies - Golden-ringed Dragon and Beautiful Demoiselle all the way along the brook.

See also post#61 above.

Brilliant Emerald you could do at Esher Common or along the Basingstoke Canal near Aldershot.

John

Latchmore Brook is indeed a fantastic site, but a word of warning - make sure you take a detailed map of the local road network with you! Ogdens car park is a pig to find, down the end of what feels like a farm access track, off a network of little roads that all look the same to me. Well worth the effort, though.

Another New Forest site that gets rave reviews is Crockford bridge, where most of the species you're looking for will more or less throw themselves at you.

Paul Ritchie has a good site list which I found very useful when I was first exploring the area.

I've only been to the Basingstoke Canal once, to the bit near the airport. Only saw one Brilliant Emerald, but did find White-legged Damsels as well. However if you're starting from the New Forest you're probably best off heading for Thursley Common - the moat pond there has loads of both Brilliant and Downy Emerald.
 

pdwinter

Paul Winter
Hi all, I'm heading to the New Forest for the first time this weekend. I know there are some sites mentioned on this thread but would be great to have some more info about general good sites and species. I'm particularly keen to see and photograph Golden-ringed Dragonfly, Southern Damselfly, Scarce Blue-tailed Damselfly, Small Red Damselfly, White-legged Damselfly and Beautiful Demoiselle. Any help really gratefully appreciated. Also, how far would I have to travel to see Brilliant Emerald?

Today I saw all those species except Scarce Blue-tailed (because I didn't look in the 2 areas where they occur) along the Ober Water and surrounding mire / bog myrtle between Puttles Bridge car park and c. SU259037. However the Latchmoor Brook, as recommended by John, should be a much safer bet for the scarce ones - Southern and Scarce Blue-tailed. AFAIK in the New Forest White-legged only occurs along the Ober Water and its is certainly numerous at the moment.

The weather forecast for Saturday is pretty poor !
 

prhodes

Well-known member
Not a great picture but hopefully enough to identify this as a Southern Damselfly at Stanford Dry Pit yesterday. Quite few Scarlet Tiger Moths flying around nearby Parsonage Moor. Phil
 

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Sandy73

Well-known member
Black Darter reported on the BDS website 25 June at Thursley. I think that's all the "standard" species up and running now, except for Willow Emerald. Unless I've forgotton something? No mention of azure hawker or irish damsel on the BDS site, but I suspect that reflects lack of observers rather than them not being out yet.

Meanwhile, over on UKdragonflies, there are some stunning photos of a Southern Emerald damsel from a new site in Kent. It's a private site, but still intriguing and offering the suggestion that the species may get established. With Willow Emerald already established in the area, Reculver seems to be becoming the place to be for new species.

Not to forgot the Norfolk Hawker site only a couple of miles away as well at Westbere.
 

Swindon Addick

Registered User
Supporter
Wales
Azure hawkers and Northern Emeralds, If you get to Loch Marree, it's worth stopping at the visitor centre at Beinn Eighe on the main road. The path that runs up the hillside behind the carpark had both species. I remember rescuing an Azure from a Golden-ringed before it would have been killed, opportunistically allowing an in hand shot. If traveling with family it is a useful spot with toilets open all hours I think. Also Pine Martins around if you are lucky, had one along the side of the main road.

So let me tell you about Beinn Eighe visitor centre....

I explored the various paths at the visitor centre, particularly the "village trail" which leads off to the east. Never did get any significant distance up the mountain, as I didn't need to. Loads of common hawkers, plus one or two azures which I was struggling to pick out. Eventually one came close enough to see enough id features, but when it was looking like it might finally settle and let me get a photo, it was chased off ... by a northern emerald. Not only two lifers in the same place, but at exactly the same moment, too.

I was hugely lucky with the weather that day, but this was a fantastic spot and not mentioned in any of my books, so thanks very much for the tip!
 

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Matthebirder

Well-known member
Glad you had a good time at Beinn Eighe I only found it by chance few years ago on one of our camping trips, I've seen Azures at various unknown places, after stopping for other stuff, it's ok if the weather is good but for first timers facing a 1500 + mile round trip to tick one off its a real gamble, let's hope we don't need to take our passports with us next time....;)
 

Dawn Balmer

Well-known member
We've got a week in Pembrokeshire in the first week of August, based in Broad Haven. Any top tips for sites to visit for Odonata (or butterflies)? Know the birding sites pretty well. Thanks.
 

Farnboro John

Well-known member
White-legged and Emerald Damselflies at BBOWT Decoy Heath today by the pond. Access from car park along Soke Road (RG7 2PF in satnav gets you very close).

Also a massive Slow-worm on the path right by the car park.

John
 

Clive Watson

Looks like I picked the wrong week to quit ampheta
Does anyone know if it is possible to park at Markway Bridge? I thought it was necessary to park at Mill Lawn and walk from there.

Thanks

Clive

To answer my own question, no it isn't, although there was quite a large lay-by to the south which might be closer than Mill Lawn.

Quick report on my New Forest trips (which turned out to be a few days rather than the 2 weeks I'd planned due to circumstances beyond my control).

From Mill Lawn, we didn't get as far as Markway Bridge but we did find 2 males Scarce Blue-tails in the boggy channel to the north of the river and several Southerns. Also Small Reds, Keeled Skimmers, Broad-bodied Chasers and a fly-by from a large hawker-type which I think was a female Emperor. Puttles Bridge car park was disappointing compared to last year, just a few teneral Keeled Skimmers and a few Small Reds. No Southerns at all. Most of the Keeled Skimmers had matured and were on the Silver Stream along with a few Broad-bodied Chasers. I still have no idea how to get along the Ober Water from Puttles Bridge and so still haven't seen White-legged Damselfly in the New Forest!

Despite the problems of last year, I did persuade my girlfriend to undertake the walk out along Latchmore Brook. Due to her limited stamina we stayed away from the river and made a bee-line straight for the good bit; a plan which worked well: several male Scarce Blue-tails, one ovipositing mature female and one or two orange immature females in the heather. No Southerns seen all day however.

And finally at Crockford, at least 2 male Golden-ringeds which gave me the runaround for a while, but eventually one was found which kept returning to a regular perch, allowing close photos. Only a few Southerns seen here though which was disappointing, plus Keeled Skimmer and Broad-bodied Chaser.

So a bit more tick-and-run than I would have liked but the main objective was achieved: getting to grips with Scarce Blue-tailed damselfly since I missed it last year.

Clive
 

Farnboro John

Well-known member
Tundry Pond Hampshire this afternoon:

Brilliant Emerald on the Basingstoke Canal where it passes the pond
Southern Hawker ditto
Banded Demoiselle ditto
Several Emperors
Black-tailed Skimmers
Red-eyes
Lots of Small Red-eyes: none the other week, must have hatched since then.
Common Blues
Blue-tails
Azures
 

pdwinter

Paul Winter
Latchmore Bottom 10/07

Warm and sunny but a bit windy

Beautiful Demoiselle
Emerald Damselfly
Blue-tailed Damselfly
Scarce Blue-tailed Damselfly (18 no aurantiaca)
Common Blue Damselfly
Azure Damselfly
Southern Damselfly (30)
Large Red Damselfly
Small Red Damselfly
Emperor Dragonfly
Golden-ringed Dragonfly
Four-spotted Chaser
Broad-bodied Chaser
Keeled Skimmer
Common Darter
 

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Clive Watson

Looks like I picked the wrong week to quit ampheta
Tundry Pond Hampshire this afternoon:

Brilliant Emerald on the Basingstoke Canal where it passes the pond
Southern Hawker ditto
Banded Demoiselle ditto
Several Emperors
Black-tailed Skimmers
Red-eyes
Lots of Small Red-eyes: none the other week, must have hatched since then.
Common Blues
Blue-tails
Azures

No Brown hawkers? When I was there last year ticking Small Red-eyed damselfly (on your recommendation!) there were a couple of Brown hawkers giving very good views as they oviposited on the rotting wooden fishing pontoons.
 

Farnboro John

Well-known member
No Brown hawkers? When I was there last year ticking Small Red-eyed damselfly (on your recommendation!) there were a couple of Brown hawkers giving very good views as they oviposited on the rotting wooden fishing pontoons.

I didn't see any, but I would expect them normally there or on the canal. It was quite windy and the damsels were all in the sheltered areas: maybe that put the Brown Hawkers off for the afternoon.

John
 

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