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Sunday, 28 May 2017

Banded Demoiselle - on 19th May, 2017

I had to go to King's Bromley, 18 miles (29 km) from my home to collect some wild bird food. On my way back I decided to call in at Staffordshire Wildlife Trust's nature reserve  - Croxall Lakes.

Having parked my car and entered the reserve, the first thing I saw of interest was a male Banded Demoiselle damselfly. This was my first of the species for 2017. Sadly, almost immediately, this disappeared into a totally inaccessible area.

For the next hour I wandered the site and visited both hides and saw almost nothing which tempted me to release the shutter on my camera. I started to head back towards my car and, having just passed under the railway bridge that separates the two halves of the reserve, I met a couple coming from the direction of the River Thame.  We had a short chat, during which I mentioned I was hoping to see some damselflies, and the gentleman said that they'd seen some green damselflies by where the railway crosses the river.

I don't know why I hadn't visited this area in the first place, but suspect that it was because it was not a good location when my prime objective in the past had been birds.

Sure enough, when I arrived in the area I immediately found several Banded Demoiselle. This is a species that I have taken very few photos of, with females being particularly lacking in the files. It was, therefore, the females that I concentrated on. 

However, I didn't totally neglect the males. I always find it amazing how different they look in different lighting conditions. In the second and third images, the blue in the wings is outstanding, whereas, in the first, it's almost entirely invisible!



Banded Demoiselle (Calopteryx splendens) (male) - Croxall Lakes
In that last image, I'm not sure if those are the remains of its lunch round its mouth parts. 

Most of the females were coloured exactly as I'd expect them to be.




Banded Demoiselle (Calopteryx splendens) (female) - Croxall Lakes
However, a couple of the specimens present were very much of a golden colour, with just a hint of green - it made me wonder if I was seeing female Beautiful Demoiselle for the first time - or was it just a trick of the light? For the moment I'll assume the latter as the waters hereabouts are sluggish (Beautiful Demoiselle prefer faster moving water), but if you think otherwise, please let me know.


Banded Demoiselle (Calopteryx splendens)? (female) - Croxall Lakes
I had to cut my visit short as I was already running well behind the time that I'd told Lindsay I'd be home for tea! Nevertheless, it was good to get some Banded Demoiselle images in the can - and it means that this is a short blog post from me, for a change!

Thank you for dropping by.
 

25 comments:

  1. Excellent shots Richard. I spent sunrise with some this morning getting a few shots. Hopefully post soon.

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    1. Thank you, Marc. I look forward to your Banded Demoiselle post!

      With best wishes - - - Richard

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  2. Absolutely superb,I remember seeing my first Banded Demoiselle not long ago.
    John.

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    1. Thank you, John. As I mentioned in a comment of your blog, I'd be delighted to swap some of our Banded Demoiselle for some of your Beautiful Demoiselle!

      With my best wishes to you and Sue - - - Richard

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  3. Hi Richard and what a super set of images, short but brilliant post. See you soon, John

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    1. Thank you, John. With commitments the way they are at the moment, I'm not sure when we'll be getting together again. It seems like it's been a long time already!

      Take good care of your health. With best wishes - - - Richard

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  4. They are so beautiful! Have a nice evening;-)

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    1. Thank you, Anne. Your wishes obviously worked as I did have a very nice evening!

      With my best wishes to you and the family - - - Richard

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  5. Richard, clean and clever, lovely Branded Demoiselle. Beautiful.

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    1. Thank you, Bob, for those kind words.

      With my very best wishes - - - Richard

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  6. Vern handsome species indeed, Richard. And great shots. You must have been quite smug when you processed these images!

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    1. Thank you, David - I think? Not sure if 'smug' has the same connotations over there as it does here!

      With my best wishes - - - Richard

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  7. Beautiful set of photos. I never see dragonflies around our area, too far from water. I really should get out and go down the the lake some time and walk around quietly. Have a good week Cheers Diane

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    1. Thank you, Diane. It only takes the smallest of ponds to attract a dragonfly! We sometimes get them in our garden - and we don't have a pond now! A dragonfly's eyesight is amazing, so wear dark clothing and move very slowly, if you go to look for some.

      I hope that June serves you well. Best wishes - - - Richard.

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    2. I will remember the dark clothing, it would never have crossed my mind. Thanks. Cheers Diane

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  8. Hello Richard,
    I really enjoy your dragonfly photos, and the Calopteryx family is gorgeous!
    The only species where the male "asks" the female for permission to mate!!!
    I hope you are enjoying great weather, here it's on and off!!
    Take good care and warm hugs to share with Lindsay :)

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    1. Thank you for your kind words, Noushka. Our weather is also very 'on and off' but I have been able to photograph a few dragons and damsels in the past week or so. It's a question striking whilst the iron is hot!

      I hope you have an excellent June. With my very best wishes - - - Richard

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  9. Richard are you using a macro lens or a normal zoom as the detail is breathtaking

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    1. Still using the Sigma 50-500 for everything, Doug! It's a great all-round lens.

      Best wishes - - - Richard

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  10. Wow ...... I'm deeply impressed by these beautiful pasture juveniles. The male are beautiful with their bright blue color but the female are beautiful in the green / gold. Gorgeous macros with amazing beautiful details.
    My compliments.

    Sincerely, Helma

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    1. Thank you, Helma, for your kind words. These really are some of my favourite damselflies, and I was pleased to be able to photograph them.

      With best wishes - - - Richard

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  11. Beautiful captures of this damselfly, lovely close-ups :)

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    1. Thank you, Lin. I hope that all is well with you. Best wishes - - Richard

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  12. Hello Richard, first of all happy birthday to you. I hope you have a wonderful day with all your loved ones around you to celebrate this special day. Thank you for your ever so kind reaction on my blog. The photos you show in this blog are stunning and the details are amazing. Friday I am going to France to spend two weeks with my brother at his farm. (brother and sistertime) Hope to see lots of beautyful things their.
    Take care and regards to you and your wife Lindsay.
    Roos

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    1. Thank you so much for your kind words, Roos. I hope you have a wonderful time on the farm with your brother in France. With my very best wishes - - - Richard

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I'm pleased to report that the anonymous spam problem seems to be solvable without using word verification. I'm now just using the 'Registered Users - includes OpenID' option in Blogger settings, and I'm not getting any spam - touch wood! I've also not received any contact from people saying that they are no longer able to make comments.