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Wednesday, 14 May 2014

Be aware of migrant possibilities....

Whilst catching up with `garden duties` this afternoon, I noticed a male Sympetrum (darter dragonfly) flying towards me up the garden path. Fortunately, it landed only a foot or so to my left and I was able to have a brief view of it. It was an all-red male (ie presumably mature) with a hint of diffuse golden colour on the wings.
Just as I was fortunate in that it landed close to me, it was unfortunate that I was carrying, in each arm, two large branches, which I could n`t put down in case I`d scare off the dragonfly. As I descended very slowly in order to get an even closer view, one of branchlets snagged and moved rapidly, thus scaring off the Sympetrum.
It`s far too early for the resident Common Darter S. striatum, and this was a mature male by the looks of it. I suspect that it might be one of the immigrant species (two of which I`ve seen in the past, but later in the summer). The wind turned markedly warmer and southerly from late morning onwards.
I`ve done a brief posting on Atropos Flight Arrivals, in case anyone else sees a peculiar Sympetrum in SW Britain. Of course, it also raises the possibility of immigrant moths on this southerly airflow, and justifies these comments on a moth blog!


  1. Sounds like Yellow-winged Darter to me Ian. It might be worth a look at Pwll Lagoon as it's suitable breeding habitat for them.

  2. Thanks Sam...I did n`t notice the distinct patch of orangeness as with yellow-winged, but my view was so brief. If I did n`t have those two large branches in each arm! If I had a net, I could have easily caught it too!
    Steve Coker has suggested red-veined darter, but I can`t truthfully say. I will check some local wetlands/water bodies over the next couple of days or so.
    Did n`t moth trap last night - too cold, full moon etc.