Monday, 18 July 2016

Cothill Fen, Parsonage Moor & Shellingford Pit 16 July

Great to have a bit of warm weather at last today, although the amount of sunshine was limited. Also the strong breeze wasn't helpful for Odonata.

Cothill Fen
This tiny NNR was somewhat sheltered from the wind and had its usual rare residents - Small Red Damselflies (about 10) and 2m & 1f Keeled Skimmer, but getting photos of both took some time and patience as well as a fair amount of risk from the treacherous conditions underfoot!

Keeled Skimmer

Small Red Damselfly

There were also plenty of these tiny leafhoppers - thanks to Jeremy Dexter and Mike Flemming who answered my appeal on its ID on the Oxon Wildlife Blog.

Cicadella Viridis

Parsonage Moor
I never find this BBOWT reserve very productive and today was no exception although the wind may have been somewhat to blame. It was much drier than Cothill Fen and all I found of note was 1 Keeled Skimmer and a coupled pair of Large Red Damselflies.

Shellingford Pit
My favourite local site is once again suffering from dreadfully low water levels, but at least the main shallow pool was somewhat sheltered from the wind and had 2m Emperors and 1 ovipositing female. I spent some time trying for flight shots of these, as they were being slowed down by the wind in places, and got lucky very quickly. This is probably my best flight shot of Emperor - I have been trying for these for almost 10 years now! 


The only other notable species was a good number of Black-tailed Skimmers. There was no sign of any Small Red-eyed Damselflies yet. 

Oh and there was an early Green Sandpiper - a sign that autumn has arrived already!

For all the latest dragonfly sightings in the County, go to my website page for 2016 records

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