A Gem and Sedges

Bird News: Ivy Lakepochard 1, common tern 16 pairs.

The warmer nights are starting to produce results in the moth trap. Last night we caught 3 poplar hawk-moths and a scatter of other species including muslin moth, light emerald, pale prominent and flame shoulder, a few more warm days and things might be heading back to something like normal catches for late May. The trap also held several caddisflies as few of which I think I have identified.

great red sedge

The common name great red sedge is actually applied to two different but closely related species and I am not certain which of the two this is, the names in common usage are those used by anglers.

yellow spotted sedge

The yellow spotted sedge is a much smaller species, but very attractive. Unfortunately they are very difficult to get onto more photogenic backgrounds as they fly very readily when disturbed.

As it was Thursday the volunteers were working on the reserve this morning, we carried on from last week and set out to put wood treatment on another hide, this time it was the long walk to the Lapwing hide. This hide is a good bit smaller than the Woodland hide we did last week and so I decided as we had over one and a half cans of preservative this would do since last week we used only just over one can. I was wrong, what I had not allowed for was the different wood used in the construction, it was much more absorbent and we were left about three-quarters through the job with supplies run dry.

I did add another species of Odonata to the reserve list for the year today, my first Blashford dragonfly of the spring and it is almost June! I even got a close up picture of it, although this was not the feat it might have been since the unfortunate insect was dead. I picked it up on the boardwalk south of the Ivy South hide, it was intact although clearly had been predated by something as there was some damage. It was a downy emerald, they are a wonderful bronze-green colour and, as the name suggests, have downy hairs, especially on the abdomen.

downy emerald