3 Aug 2014

3 Aug 14 - Searching Old Haunts For Scarce Blue-tails

About the rarest of the breeding Dorset Dragonflies is the Scarce Blue-tailed Damselfly. It is also the only one I haven't seen in Dorset. Therefore, I've been keen to try & see if I could refind this localised & nationally scarce Damselfly at an old haunt. The problem is compounded as one of the types of habitats they like are more open slow flowing water habitats, with bare substrate or limited vegetation. By their nature, some of the newer habitats, end up getting covered with vegetation in time and become less unsuitable for the Scarce Blue-tailed Damselflies. But they also like bog pools. In the absence of current sites or negative news from old sites, I decided to have a look around a number of local historical sites in Poole Harbour area. So it on with the wellies on a nice hot & dry day and I was ready for some strange looks from other walkers at my footwear: still it was in a good cause. While I wasn't ultimately successful with finding any Scarce Blue-tailed Damselflies, it was still a really good day out with the camera.
Keeled Skimmer: Male. The commonest Dragonfly in the bogs, but also the most active & hardest to photograph
Black Darter: Male. This is a small black coloured darker with 2 yellow stripes on the thorax & small yellow dots between the stripes. There are also dark red markings towards the end of the abdomen
Black Darter: Male. Note, the black pterostigma, black legs & unmarked bases to the wings. They also have a narrow waist but this isn't the best angle to see this
Small Red Damselfly: Male. Note, the all red abdomen
Small Red Damselfly: Male. Note, the red eyes, legs & pterostigma and bronzy-black thorax
Blue-tailed Damselfly: Male. Unfortunately, all the Damselflies with blue tails were Blue-tailed Damselflies. They have a clean cut turquoise blue marking on segment 8 & black on the final 2 segments of the abdomen. Scarce Blue-tailed Damselflies have the turquoise blue on segment 9 & the end part of segment 8 & only the final segment is black