Here Be Dragons

I mentioned in the previous post that I’d seen some Dragonflies on my wanderings and here they are…

Back home I spotted this Common Darter by the pond last Thursday. At first I was disappointed as I didn’t see any Dragons, but then I managed to spot this one and get a couple of shots.

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I also managed to get a couple of shots of this big chap (a Golden-Ringed Dragonfly) who was being very elusive and flying off long distances when I crept up on him. I spent quite some time stalking him before admitting defeat. These are the best shots I managed:

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Then more recently I was on my way down to Bournemouth (where I am now) and stopped over at my Mum’s in Bristol. While pottering round her garden looking at butterflies we were surprised to find another Common Darter there. There’s no pond in the garden so I’m guessing he must have been visiting from the ponds down in the fields below their house. He perched awkwardly high up so the shots are a bit different from my usual approach.

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Not only that, but then we spotted a Damselfly in the garden too! I think they came just to make me happy 🙂

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We got down to Bournemouth a couple of days ago and while the weather was half-decent we had a walk in the gardens. I did spot one or two Dragons but they were being very unhelpful so no photos of them. I did get this one shot of a Beautiful Demoiselle though:

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Hopefully if the weather perks up a bit we’ll be able to go for another stroll and perhaps I’ll catch another Dragon 🙂

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A Lack of Fluttering

Is it just me or is there a bit of a lack of butterflies this year in the UK? Our Buddleia is blooming, and yet there are hardly any butterflies around. Perhaps it’s the weather – not especially warm and certainly not very sunny at present. It seems to be a mainly damp summer with occasional spells of good weather for a couple of days at a time. Usually once the Buddleia is flowering there would be Red Admirals, Small Tortoiseshells, Painted Ladies, and Commas around, but I haven’t seen any in the garden. All I’ve seen recently are Ringlets, Green-Veined Whites and Small Whites. Of course, it could just be that I’m just impatient and expecting them a bit too soon!

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Ringlet Butterfly
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Ringlet Butterfly
Green-Veined White Butterflies mating
Green-Veined White Butterflies mating
Small White Butterfly
Small White Butterfly

Rainy Season

In some parts of the world there is a regular rainy season. In Britain sometimes it feels like it’s always rainy season! Our winter this year hasn’t been very wintry really. We’ve had one morning where there was a sprinkling of snow, and perhaps 2 or 3 frosty mornings but for much of the rest of the time it’s been windy and rainy. Today is no exception. So I decided to stay indoors and show you the weather by means of my orchid with ‘fake raindrops’ and a glimpse of the rainy window behind.

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And of course I can’t resist getting a bit closer 🙂 Being in the window the petals are backlit which makes for interesting shots.

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Inspired by the Weekly Photo Challenge: Seasons

Stalking Raindrops

When stalking raindrops it is important to be careful or you risk destroying the very thing you seek…

Today I was being extra careful as I was trying to avoid doing anything to vigorous that would disturb my delicate head after a migraine yesterday, as well as avoiding destroying raindrops. When the sun came out for a while after rain all morning I thought a gentle potter around the garden stalking droplets would be just what I needed. I was pleased to find a few nice ones, even one on an insect’s mouth!

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In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Careful.”

Beautiful Bindweed

Regarded by many as a particularly pesky garden weed, Bindweed has a poor reputation. However, just look how beautiful it can be, in the sunshine after the rain!

Delicate Droplets

Sunday started out rather wet. Later on when the rain stopped and the sun came out, the droplets were calling to me! As it was a still day the droplet just hung there even on the most delicate of plants.

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After the Rain

Yesterday it rained pretty much all day long. This morning there is some sunshine amongst the clouds and it’s dry. The garden is jewelled with water droplets and I couldn’t resist going out and getting some lovely droplet photos. It’s mainly the Alchemilla which is one of the best plants for holding onto droplets, but first a rather damp Herb Robert:

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Bee-draggled

I found this bee yesterday. It’s some kind of Adrena bee (not a bumble or a honey bee). It seemed rather bee-draggled (ha ha I’m so funny) and wasn’t moving much.

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I was a bit worried about this poor bee, so I tried to give it some sugar-water, without much success. On the plus side, it did make it easy to photograph.

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I hope the poor little thing managed to gather some energy and find a safe place to hide from all the rain overnight! :-/

Mist and fog patches, and occasional drizzle

The weather continues very autumnally (is that a word!?). The trees are changing colour swiftly and it is very mixed weather with lots of dampness and not a lot of sun lately. I was pottering around the garden the other day and spotted this pair of leaves – I love how the little one looks like a heart 🙂

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And this is a quick iPhone photo I took from my bedroom window showing you the reason for all the leaves on the grass. We have a Tulip Tree on the left and a Beech tree on the right. It’s lovely to have this view to greet me in the morning. Further afield across the village I can also see the hillside changing colour and trees all around in other gardens and field edges changing too.

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I have another day off today (it’s half-term) and maybe if the weather forecast is true I may venture out later – “However, through the day there should be some bright spells”…

Gusty winds moving in from the south west

I have a day off today and I decided I had to go outside no matter what! Luckily it was not raining, but there was quite a gusty wind and this made life a little difficult. When you do close-up shots even a small breeze can be a pain as the movement is magnified.

The Herb Roberts seem to last all year and there’s still a few dotted around. I liked this shot, with the stamens in focus and the rest of the flower all soft. IMG_8355

That wasn’t my first attempt at this flower – it kept waggling about in the wind spoiling many shots! This next one is one of the failures … although I kind of like it as you can almost feel the wind.

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I saw these pretty little grass flowers and in a brief pause in the wind managed to capture their delicate green feathery beauty.

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And finally, the tough old Evening Primrose … still going strong! I am amazed at this plant! You may be able to see that the petals on the left were blowing in the wind but I managed to get a focus on the stamens & stigma in the middle of the flower.

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Perhaps there will be a more sunny weather update soon! Since the clocks went back, I am strangely looking forward to cold crisp winter days, and snow and icicles! Brrr.

Outbreaks of patchy rain or drizzle

The weather at the moment has not been so nice – not all that good for photography. I have very little time and then when I do, the weather is as above. So I nipped out when the rain and drizzle had stopped for a minute and got a few shots. It’s now raining again :-/ Ah well, at least I got out for a few minutes 🙂

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Autumn leaf caught in a raindrop on the hedge
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Many raindrops collected on this Tulip Tree leaf
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Beech leaves fallen in the bird bath, with droplets magnifying their veins

Cat in a Rain Drop

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Today I accidentally caught my cat in a raindrop! Can you see him there, upsidedown among the ragwort flowers?! There’s not much going on out there apart from raindrops and the ocasional spider or fly, so raindrops were my focus. I didn’t quite get the photo I wanted but this amused me. The cat was following me around wanting to get involved with everything – I think he achieved his goal, even if I didn’t! 🙂