Castle Hill Dew Pond

Another blazer of a day (it won't last), and time to visit Castle Hill nature reserve and head for the secluded dew pond. A perfect location for dragonfly watching.

There were plenty of butterflies and day-flying moths to keep me occupied during the walk to the pond, including 5-spot burnet moths, various small blues and skippers, but the most impressive displays were by the innumerable marbled whites.

Down at the pond itself, the dragonflies were playing hard to get, spending much of their time either in dizzyingly rapid flight or ducking down behind the ample pond plants. The broad bodied chasers are at least prone to taking a rest every now and then and are marked as 'relatively easy' on my scale of dragonfly photo subjects. This is a male in a very typical pose.

The emperors are more of a challenge. They are extremely rapid in flight, rarely stop and when they do they tend stand vertically and thus blend in with whatever it is they are gripping. Still, one can try. 😉

The pick of the shots though was this one of a pair of mating common darters.

The next few days may be punctuated by light showers, but thankfully not a return to the unrelenting bad weather of the past few months. At least I hope not.
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Camera note: all shots taken with the Canon 7D and EF 400mm f/5.6L USM lens, aprt from the first one which was taken with the EF 100mm f/2.8L macro IS USM lens.

This entry was posted in Butterfly, dragonfly, South Downs National Park and tagged , .

12 Comments

  1. derWandersmann July 27, 2012 at 2:07 am #

    A good day, Words. And a nice change of pace.

  2. gdare July 27, 2012 at 5:07 am #

    Second and fifth photographs are beautiful :up:

  3. Mickeyjoe-Irl July 27, 2012 at 1:07 pm #

    Fingers crossed for the weather.

  4. avo999 July 27, 2012 at 8:07 pm #

    so beautiful – you´re photos are always like a new world for me :love: :love: :love:

  5. 53north July 28, 2012 at 8:07 pm #

    I managed a ride up into the wolds and did a few macro attempts with my 5mp phone…

  6. SittingFox July 29, 2012 at 6:07 pm #

    Great shot of the marbled white on the thistle :up:

  7. Words July 29, 2012 at 11:07 pm #

    53north, that's pretty good with a phone. I see a couple of hover flies there.

  8. Words July 29, 2012 at 11:07 pm #

    Andrea, thanks!

  9. Words July 29, 2012 at 11:07 pm #

    dW, it was so good to have some decent weather. I headed straight to a spot I knew would deliver!

  10. Words July 29, 2012 at 11:07 pm #

    Mick, the weather is holding up… but by its fingertips.

  11. Words July 29, 2012 at 11:07 pm #

    Adele, thanks! It made a change to have a nearly perfectly clean background.

  12. Words July 29, 2012 at 11:07 pm #

    Darko, thanks! I was really pleased with both those shots.