Monday, 6 June 2011

The story of the Old Bin Lady and the Dainty Damsels

Long long ago, on a far away island named Sheppey, lived One man and his blog but not so Far Far away another bridge was built over to the Island of Sheppey which alleviated the summer and bank holiday traffic problems caused by any boat taller than a canoe and the ceremonial lifting of the bridge. Such isolation from the mainland brought with it a rich variety of habitats and a flourishing set of pools situated next to the new bridge which could now be available to that new breed of birder, the damsel hunters!

John and Gill Brook made the discovery of the decade when a little known species of Damselfly, Coenagrion scitulum was rediscovered in the UK following the loss of the species from Essex in the 1950's associated with the floods

Saturday morning found me and a few other Odonata followers attempting to track down this enigmatic species and in so doing we were amongst a small but growing group able to once again witness this cracking but 'subtle' species in the UK. Two males were found and another different male (based on abdominal markings on the Sunday). Hopefully the two photos show many of the 'key' features for this species but I will certainly return to hopefully see more. This was my 45th UK species of Odonata and with two still in Scotland and another in Ireland, the magic 50 is getting nearer.
Size wise they really do live up to their name, and the markings on Segment 2 of the abdomen plus the 'long' pale pterostigma give them a slightly different appearance to puella.

Yesterday evening, there was a shout from the garden from the missus 'what's this moth in the bin' ...................!

It's the Old Lady, or as in this case the BIN LADY. First one I've seen this year and another great addition to a fantastic weekend of insects. I spent Saturday with Lou down at Hamstreet with Steve Whitehouse and friends seeing loads of moths, probably 30 new species for me, including the wanted Scarce Merveille de Jour, Red necked Footman, Rannoch Looper (part of a large influx), Lobster, Pale Tussock, Ingrailed and Purple Clay, Pine Hawk Moth, and loads more, cracking stuff!

I also saw a few birds this weekend including this Little Tern....

IRANIA good luck to all


Tony Morris said...

Hi Baz, did you read the Irania is ina Doctors garden and that there are ladders there so you can see it, but you have to pay! sounds like something out of a Carry On film. At least it will give Del Boy some more ammunition to throw at the loony fringe of the birding fraternity.

Derek Faulkner said...

The pictures in the papers yesterday of the lunatic fringe at this latest twitch spoke volumes, although none actually appeared to be wearing anoraks. Sad people.

As you would expect, I preferred the isolation that just the old bridge gave us.