Tuesday 20 May 2014

More visitors

The pond was a popular place on this very hot day. There were several of the blue damsels I first saw yesterday, but today at least one pair had formed and egg-laying was taking place. I now know that they are, in fact, azure damselflies, not common blues. A much bigger visitor was a female broad-bodied chaser. She was also occupied laying eggs and never settled. I managed to get a picture of her in flight.

Another unusual insect caught my attention this afternoon. This is a wasp beetle, clytus arietis. Their larvae live in rotting wood  and the adults eat pollen. They look scary but are completely harmless. They mimic wasps as a way of deterring predators.

Sunday 18 May 2014

Around the Pond

There were a lot of visitors at the pond today. Several large red damselflies had mated and were laying eggs. A few blue damselflies had arrived too - my first of the year.  None of them seemed to be paired yet. One of them is pictured below.

But the biggest surprise was this!

A grass snake had caught itself in the netting and I had to cut it free. It slithered off gratefully into the shrubs around the pond.

Where do I Walk?

Mainly around the National Trust land at Washington Common and Warren Hill in West Sussex. I also spend some time around my old Steyning walks and other interesting places in West Sussex.