Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Emerging brilliance

Freshly emerged Broad-bodied Chaser, emerging Large Red Damselfly and pair of Large Reds 'in tandem'.

I have dug a pond in the garden of every house I have lived in.  A year ago I completed my latest creation - a modest 2m x 2m effort.  Last Sunday, exactly a year on, I spent the day watching literally hundreds of damselflies emerging. I watched larvae swimming to emergent vegetation stems and clambering out of the water, often over others, to emerge as adults. Some even climbed a metre to the top of a sundial placed tastefully by the waters edge.  I've recorded 6 species of damsel/dragonflies at the pond over the year and three emerged on Sunday.  Large Red Damselflies were by far the most numerous, the empty larval cases clinging to every bit of vegetation.  There were also a few Azure Damselflies and a handful of Broad-bodied Chasers.  Little was originally added to the pond other than a few plants scavenged from the local gravel pits and a bucketful of sludge.  Today the pond has 3 species of amphibians, mayflies, water-boatmen, tadpoles, dragonflies and more. Best enjoyed on a sunny day, sat on a nearby strategically placed bench, with a glass of red.  Brilliant.

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