A dragonfly flew through the garden a few days ago but much too fast to be identified from the window. Then yesterday, two Southern Hawkers jousting with hornets from a nearby nest (it was a draw).
I have a feeling this might be my last dragonfly of the season.
Southern Hawker, Aeshna cyanea. Nikon D5200 Tamron 150-600mm f6.3 460mm 1/250 ISO 640
In theory chasers are among the easier dragonflies to photograph as they tend to return regularly to a favoured perch. Just focus on the perch and wait. Unfortunately this guy had other ideas – he was all over the place. It was a windy day (lots of those this summer) and the perch was further away over the water than I would have liked, so for a 600mm hand-held shot I’m reasonably pleased with this.
Four-spotted Chaser, Libellula quadrimaculata. Nikon D5200 Tamron 150-600mm f8 600mm 1/125 ISO 200
Common Blue Damselflies, Enallagma cyathigerum. Nikon D5200 Tamron 150-600mm f11 260mm 1/350 ISO 400
My 2015 list (as of 25.08.15):
Common Blue Damselfly
Large Red Damselfly
It’s not often damselflies will stay still long enough for a close range focus stack but this male Emerald Damselfly was very obliging, giving a nice depth of focus. He looks like a happy chappie but I think the smile is deceptive.
A somewhat more co-operative specimen, much better light = a slight improvement on my previous effort.
Nearly there now folks, only one more day to go. Marvel at this magnificent beast – older than the dinosaurs and outlived them in style.
The Darters have emerged. For the rest of the season until the hard frosts come it’ll be Common Darters all the way now. But look closer. That’s not so bad 🙂
Not as I first thought a Hairy Dragonfly (the season is already over for them), but a Brown Hawker. Still got a hairy thorax in this macro shot.
Twenty years ago there were no Emperor Dragonflies here. Now they are a resident breeding species, but they’re also probably the hardest dragonfly to photograph. These miniature fighter planes fly at over 20 mph, constantly change direction and rarely perch. It took me an hour to get these crummy shots. But what a privilege to have a pair of these buzzing past my head.
Don’t you just love it when a plan comes together? After several abortive attempts due to adverse weather, we finally hit the jackpot and had a grand day out, recording 11 species of dragonfly and damselfly:
Common Blue Damselfly
So I’m declaring this week Dragonfly Week, and I’ll start off with this magnificent female Broad-bodied Chaser.
We went out at the weekend looking for dragonflies. Found a few but got distracted by orchids 😉
The black-tailed skimmers were probably my favourite spot. The long lens proved its worth for skittish dragons. Here’s Mrs Black-Tailed Skimmer: