Last summer we were delighted when our newly made pond brought in damselflies and dragonflies. One of the most engaging was the Broad-bodied Chaser. He had read the book which said “He regularly returns to the same perch after swift flights out across the water” as that is exactly what he did – adopting a horizontal twig on a hazel stump from which he did regular patrols round the pond.
His residency must have included a successful relationship as today a nymph crawled from the water, for some reason traversed a meter or so of grass, before choosing a stalk for its metamorphosis.
Very slowly its wings began to expand
In this vulnerable state the colour and shape of the wings blended with the surrounding grass stems
and from above, while its head was spectacular in colour and shape, it was also very similar to the surrounding Meadow Buttercup buds
It took about an hour and a half to prepare – no movement was apparent but its shape and colour were constantly changing
Eventually her (this is a female) wings parted slightly
before suddenly flicking open to full spread
Then it was off, leaving the empty exuvia still clinging to the grass
It is quite unusual, here in the West, to be walking without wellies and worrying about the sun.
Working our way through the Kingdoms…
All plants have no worries about the sun
The more light the better
and light and heat mean reaching for the skies
All water turns green as plant life there multiplies
and the invertebrates seem happy too.
The more sun, the more buzz
and a chance to refuel for the flight home
the Bumbles seem happy too
Only when we reach the ducks do we find some hesitance
Our nearest relatives
start off finding the spot for maximum absorbtion
before moving to the shade
Who knows what sheep think
“Provide the habitat and the living things will come” has been a truism but now reading Mark Cocker’s Our Place
a fascinating autopsy of the state of our wildlife does beg the response – ok, if it has somewhere to come from.
However, creating a pond and watching
it fill with activity
must be one of the most satisfying experiences ever.
Eighteen months ago it was a hole in the ground
slowly filling up
A year ago it was ringed by barren earth
Two months ago it was frozen over
Now it could almost be called mature
Each day another water lily leaf surfaces
trying to Monet-ise the water
This pond, known as “The Lake” is pond number three. We inherited two and the water lilies come from a metre diameter tub which is crammed with them and…
come to The Lake to suck water from the moss at the edge
Meanwhile pond number four awaits development in a completely different place