Photography competition plug!

Catching up on office work after a busy week of school groups and a lovely morning fishing in the Dockens Water on the family river dip session where the brook lampreys have now definitely spawned and done their thing and the new fish of the month is most definitly the minnow… we only catch minnow along this stretch of the river during the late spring/early summer months and I assume that the remainder of the year they move upstream (but could be they move downstream and come upstream to spawn. Anyone out there know?). Either way they are definitly thinking of breeding now and they are all very brightly coloured with wonderful big red splodges where their fins join the body. Bullhead were also much in evidence of course, along with freshwater shrimp, stonefly nymph, caddisfly larvae and a rather fine beautiful demoiselle nymph and a golden ringed dragonfly nymph too!

Knowing that many a fine photographer receives or visits these blog posts I have been asked to promote Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trusts 2016 photography competition…

Entries need to be submitted by 30th June, so the clock is ticking… for more information on rules and how to enter please visit:

Consider it promoted…

I won’t be submitting the following images, but although not great they’ll spruce up the pages of this post at least a little bit:

At long last the light trap turned up a little bit more than common quakers and Hebrew characters – although not a lot more! Pictured are what I think are a lesser swallow prominent (but might not be lesser) and what I am less confident is a nutmeg – but could have been any number of other species. Either way they are both attractive beasts and I am confident that they will be correctly identified by “Comment” very quickly if I am wrong!




Lesser(?) swallow prominent

This minotaur beetle was also liberated from the trap so it can bumble off in search of rabbit droppings…


Minotaur beetle

And finally, because several weeks ago visitors were asking about them and surprised when they were not yet in evidence, some bluebells:



They are now in full flower across the mature wooded areas of the nature reserve, as usual lagging by at least 2 or 3 weeks behind the bluebells of nearby chalk woodlands. Really not sure why New Forest bluebells should flower so much later than their chalk soil neighbours but every year it is the same. Maybe chalk soils warm up more quickly?



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