Friday, 31 August 2012

Two Dragonflies, a Damselfly and a Bush Cricket

An immature female common darter?
Typical man changes his hobbies on a regular basis. Whether through boredom or not really getting to grips with the previous one, or just finding something more interesting, hobbies can be ephemeral. Of course, I'm a typical man.

A member of the Libellulidae family, either a ruddy darter or a male common darter.
Collecting beer cans, Top Trumps, crisp packets...yep, done that. Visiting all the football grounds in my home county...yep, doing that. Groundhopping can't be done during the summer though, so taking photos of insects occasionally takes its place as the hobby du jour.

A blue-tailed damselfly.
Here are some of my favourite photos from the last year or so.

From the top:
  • What I believe to be a female common darter dragonfly, taken at The Blue Pool in Dorset at the end of July 2012;
  • Either a male of the same species, or a ruddy darter, taken on Brownsea Island in Dorset, October 2011 (I am definitely NOT an expert - 70+ species of dragonfly in the UK - males, females and immatures often appearing completely different within the same species - no, this is going to take me a while to become competent);
  • A blue-tailed damselfly (fairly sure about that - also taken at The Blue Pool);
  • A speckled bush-cricket, taken in my garden two weeks ago!

And finally, a speckled bush-cricket!
Dragonfly and damselfly experts impart their knowledge in many places, including here and here. I'm learning!