17
May
12

Beetling Around in the Dark

Sometimes when you seek you find; however it is not necessarily the thing you seek that you find. So it was in the first week of May.

Traps were set in the water for newts. Light sticks were placed in the traps to encourage curiosity. Sure, the illuminated trap encouraged curiosity but not that of newts.

The following morning in heavy rain from the trap a large black water beetle was extracted. The last time I’d seen an adult water beetle of this size was when I was a boy fishing with a net on long hot summer days in my local stream in South Yorkshire. They were Great Diving Beetles and were proudly shown to others in my class at school the following day before being put to swim endlessly around a large glass jar on the ‘nature table’. This critter was similar to those Great Diving Beetles … but different. After much qualification and investigation it transpires it was in fact Dytiscus dimidiatus A Thick horned Beetle no less. A relict of the time the county was covered in fens. A rare find in this area … the last was in 1855.

No it’s not a good photograph is it? – please understand it was raining very hard at the time I was trying to hold a brolly and the camera at the same time as well as coping with a rather feisty beetle.

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