Archive for the 'Dragonflies' Category

05
Sep
22

Wild Ken Hill

One of the best places in the county to see Grey Partridge is Wild Ken Hill between Snettisham and Heacham in the West of Norfolk. Book yourself on a ‘Big Picture Tour’ for a trip around the estate and learn what good work the WKH team are doing on the farm and in the rewilding area to look after our wildlife and produce our food sustainably.

26
Aug
22

There be dragons

A wonderful dragonfly walk at the start of the month by Steve Rowland of the NWT (Norfolk Wildlife Trust) accompanied by Di his lovely wife. I was delighted to be Steve’s guest at Royden Common as he showed members of the NNNS (Norfolk and Norwich Naturalists’ Society) and allcomers, the heath and what thrives there. Some excellent conservation work by excellent naturalists.

I managed to get some half decent photos of Black Darter that were flying around the pools. Remember anyone can attend the NNNS events usually (but not always) at no cost. See http://norfolknaturalists.org.uk/wp/events-page/#main for details.

17
Aug
22

Hawkeye

15
Jul
22

A rare bird and a rare dragon

Without doubt one of my own personal highlights of the recent butterfly tour to Cumbria was finding several White Faced Darter Dragonflies. One of our rarest insects it sports a very smart livery indeed. One in particular was lying low out of the wind warming itself on the boardwalk.

Perhaps the only thing that could have ousted it from the top spot was a bird sat on a pub sign just West of the Welland as we ventured back into Norfolk. As bold as brass, sat at the roadside sporting distinctive red feet was the dark slate form of a male Red footed Falcon. Seeing a good bird at 60mph is never satisfying so I even negotiated the traffic to turn around and go back for a better look … only to find it had moved on.

19
Jun
22

5 Gold Rings

Golden Ringed Dragonflies are just the biz aren’t they? There’s something about them that makes them quite enigmatic. Maybe it’s because they patrol along shady peaty rivers at speed making them difficult to photograph. We were lucky to find this individual hung up resting in the sun this week on a trip to Hampshire.

21
May
22

A Collection

A few nice insects on the wing at the moment.

31
Dec
21

Happy New Year

This year has been a strange one. A year of two halves and contrasts. The first half, once again like 2020, became a period of sedentary incapability. Tours and trips had to be cancelled. Unpicking the arrangements with boat operators and hotels is never easy. Indeed, sadly some of them financially went to ‘the wall’ as their business slumped.

I always said that because of the way I run the business, and my financial affairs, WT&E would front out anything thrown at it no matter how long the lockdown, without the help of government handouts. Little did I know that the business levels in the second half of the year would bounce back so strongly and so quickly.

Guests were keen to get back into the countryside and I couldn’t blame them, having been isolated and restricted for so long. However, safety of guests was paramount. Local day tours were conducted by guests following in their own vehicle and longer tours when we shared a vehicle were carried out against a background of testing by both guests and me. As a consequence, we had some good local tours and some effortlessly successful tours away.

A good relationship this year with ‘Wild Ken Hill’ and involvement in a small way with some of the good things they are trying to do there was very pleasing. Long may their rewilding and regenerative agricultural development continue.

Still no trips abroad. I feel it would be foolish to commit to these yet. To do so in the current environment is inviting difficulty and potential unnecessary expense. Maybe in 2023. The wilds of Australia, North and South America will all still be there; as will the Atlantic Islands. All on our agenda.

A single new bird for me during the course of the year was the Syke’s Warbler on Blakeney Point in September. The supporting cast of other birds, dragonflies, butterflies and cetaceans were many, but perhaps the pick of the crop was the Sei Whale in the Firth of Forth.

The accompanying photo I took of a Sanderling last week, a bird renowned for running up and down beaches, perhaps summarises the year; a lot of backwards and forwards.

All in all a good year. 2022 promises even more. I hope above all hope the coming year gives you your needs and desires. Happy New Year.

21
Sep
21

A Stained Window

Perched up in a sunny bush … a handsome mature male Migrant Hawker. Lots of them around at the moment.

03
Sep
21

In flight

A Southern Hawker in flight showing those bright yellow/green headlights behind the eyes that make this species so distinctive in flight.

08
Aug
21

Dragons Den

A couple of photos of dragons taken last week. Firstly a Southern Hawker at Foxley Wood and a Black Darter (female) taken on the recent Cumbria Butterfly Tour.

Southern Hawker
Black darter (female)



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