Thursday, 23 June 2016

A couple of new damsels at Pennington Flash

Well for me at least! Yesterday I found a male banded demoiselle near Ramsdales hide and today two red-eyed damselflies on the nearby Leeds-Liverpool canal.

Banded demoiselle at Pennington Flash today, in the Himalayan balsam near Ramsdales hide. It's a species of unpolluted well vegatated reasonably fast flowing rivers and it occurs commonely at Sankey Brook in St Helens. I wouldn't be surprised if it's on the golf course at Pennington but I've never seen it there. It does wander a bit and can occur around lakes, e.g. I've seen it at Eccleston Mere and on Bold Moss where there are no rivers.

Red-eyed damselfly on the Leeds - Liverpool canal at Pennington Flash this evening. I've spent a lot of time over the past few days looking for them to no avail on the lilly pad covered pond at the back of the yacht club. This evening I was cycling along the canal and spotted a couple close in to the side on just a handful of pads. I find these quite timid damselflies and these are about the best photos I've ever managed of them.

There was a time when Leg O'Mutton dam in St Helens was the most northerly population on the UK west coast, but not any more because these are further north than Leg O'Mutton. However, they've probably extended their range a lot further north even than this in recent years so I'm not celebrating!

Apart from the eyes being red, they also look quite bulbous compared to the eyes of other damselflies.

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