An unreliable memoir

Archive for July, 2015

Geranium pratense

Geranium pratense
Meadow Crane’s-bill, Geranium pratense. Nikon D5200 Tokina 100mm f16 1/125 ISO 400

What’s out there in the dark

Willow Beauty
Willow Beauty, Peribatodes rhomboidaria. Nikon D5200 Tokina 100mm f22 1/250 ISO 100

We puny humans still have the old monkey brain fear of the dark thing going on, which is a shame as I am constantly astounded by the beauty of what’s out there in the dark – such as this magnificent Willow Beauty. It’s enough to make you want to join the dark side. (Although his buddy the demon-eyed lacewing is a bit scary … especially if you’re an aphid).


Lacewing, Chrysoperla carnea.

Broad-leaved Helleborine

Broad-leaved Helleborine

Broad-leaved Helleborine, Epipactis helleborine. Nikon D5200 Tokina 100mm f22 1/250 ISO 100

Broad-leaved Helleborine, bringing my season’s orchid count to thirteen:

2015 List (as of 25.07.15)
Early Purple Orchid
Green Winged Orchid
Man Orchid
Common Spotted Orchid
Greater Butterfly Orchid
Southern Marsh Orchid
Heath Spotted Orchid
Fragrant Orchid
Bee Orchid
Wasp Orchid
Pyramidal Orchid
Common Twayblade
Broad-leaved Helleborine

Painted Lady

Painted Lady
Painted Lady, Vanessa cardui. Sony DSC-HX20V f4.5 18mm 1/320 ISO 100

It’s enough to turn a chap’s head – although based on the shape of the abdomen, I think this Lady is a bloke?
Interesting Painted Lady fact: This is the only butterfly species ever to have been recorded in Iceland.

Weevily distinguished

Nettle Weevil
Nettle Weevil, Phyllobius pomaceus. Nikon D5200 Tokina 100mm f22 1/90 ISO 400

I like weevils, but there are so many green ones they are virtually impossible to identify for a mere mortal like me. Unless you catch them munching on their food plant. This is a Nettle Weevil.

That’s not a dragonfly

Common Ragwort
Common Ragwort, Senecio jacobaea. Sony DSC-HX20V f/3.2 4.5mm 1/30 ISO 100

Phew, lets take a break from the excitement of Dragonfly Week by staring at this pretty bunch of flowers.
The observant may notice I snuck a soldier beetle in there. Sorry the white balance if a bit off, this is a compact camera jpeg taken in near darkness so not as much room for processing as with a RAW file.

Autumnal Already

Sulphur Tuft, Hypholoma fasciculare. Sony DSC-HX20V f3.2 4.5mm 1/15 ISO 800

Out early in the morning after the heavy rain and there was a very different feeling. Quite cool and a brown hare which had spent the night sheltering in the wood went crashing away. Lots of fungi have already started to appear, such as these Sulphur Tufts (Hypholoma fasciculare). The second half of the year has begun. Only 151 photography days until Christmas.

Dragonfly Week, Day 6: That’s not a dragonfly

Variable Damselfly
Variable Damselfly, Coenagrion pulchellum. Sony DSC-HX20V f/5 24.8mm 1/160 ISO 250

OK, strictly speaking it’s a damselfly not a dragonfly (wings folded rather than stretched out when perched), but it’s an interesting one, and the rarest species I’ve posted this week.

Hope you enjoyed Dragonfly Week, feedback welcome.

Dragonfly Week, Day 5: Older Than The Dinosaurs

Southern Hawker
Southern Hawker, Aeshna cyanea. Nikon D5200 Tokina 100mm f8 1/60 ISO 200

Nearly there now folks, only one more day to go. Marvel at this magnificent beast – older than the dinosaurs and outlived them in style.

Southern Hawker