Stephen Burch's Birding & Dragonfly Website

Home | Trip Reports | Gallery | UK index | Oxon pics | UK pics | Dragonflies | Other Nature | Contact | Links


Dragonfly and Damselfly Photos 2021

  Southern Hawker, Boundary Brook NR, Oxford

24 September 2021

In a warm but cloudy spell, I found this individual was hovering much better than is normally the case for this species. This came very close, virtually filling the frame!

As soon as the sun came out, it was far more mobile, making any attempts at photography hopeless.

Click to enlarge
Southern Hawker, Boundary Brook NR, Oxford

24 September 2021

Crop the photo above.

Click to enlarge
  Migrant Hawker, Faringdon Folly Park Pond, Oxon.

22 September 2021

This flight shot took a fair amount of patience to secure.

Click to enlarge
Migrant Hawker, Faringdon Folly Park Pond, Oxon.

22 September 2021

Plenty of this late season species in the reed mace along the eastern bank of this pond on this fine afternoon.

Click to enlarge
  Willow Emerald Damselfly, Shillingford, Oxon.

15 September 2021

Thanks to Geoff Wyatt for finding these in a backwater of the River Thames, NW from the Shillingford Bridge hotel. This appeared a great spot and sure enough we were soon onto at least 4 Willow Emeralds, including 1-2 tandem pairs. They were mostly more distant than I'd have liked and with cluttered backgrounds. This was however a bit closer with a clean background.

Click to enlarge 
Willow Emerald Damselfly, Shillingford, Oxon.

15 September 2021

Crop of the photo above.

Click to enlarge  
Willow Emerald Damselfly, Shillingford, Oxon.

15 September 2021

Another somewhat nearer one. For this image, I have "focus stacked" just two shots, one focused on the head and the other on the tip of abdomen.

Click to enlarge   
  Southern Hawker, Shillingford, Oxon.

15 September 2021

Having taken a large number of photos of the Willow Emeralds (above), I noticed this Southern Hawker which was being a bit more cooperative than is usual for this species.

So it seemed worth further attempts at flight photos, following my Boundary Brook efforts recently. This is the best of the only sequence of shots I managed to get before it disappeared to be replaced by a Migrant Hawker.

Click to enlarge
  Migrant Hawker, Grove Meadows Stormwater pond, Grove, Oxon.

8 September 2021

Appeared in "hovering mode" very briefly just as I arrived but thereafter was not obliging. 

Apart from a small number of Small Red-eyed damsels, there was a real end of season feel to this site today.

Click to enlarge   
  Southern Hawker, Boundary Brook NR, Oxford

7 September 2021

Patrolling the small garden pond, but still very difficult to get onto even with the R5. Half the time it was in shade which didn't help!

My first flight photo of this species, and probably one of the most difficult.

Click to enlarge
  Migrant Hawker, Farmoor, Oxon

3 September 2021

Briefly hovering over the pool with the rickety footbridge at Buckthorn Meadow. The R5's animal eye AF makes these shots much easier than with all my previous cameras!

Click to enlarge
  Migrant Hawker, Standlake Common, Oxon

26 August 2021

Using the 500f4 lens with the x2 TC as a macro lens! Also used focus stacking for improved depth of field, this time assisted by use of a tripod.

Click to enlarge   
  Small Red-eyed Damselfly, Grove Meadows Stormwater pond, Grove, Oxon.

4 August 2021

There were large numbers of this localised damselfly present today at this site. Unusually, at this site they seem to settle on the surrounding vegetation more often than other sites.

This is another hand held focus-stacked image.

Click to enlarge  
  Common Darter,  Boundary Brook NR, Oxford, Oxon.

3 August 2021

Another flight shot taking advantage of the R5's amazing ability to lock-on to the target!

Click to enlarge 
  Southern Hawker,  Boundary Brook NR, Oxford, Oxon.

3 August 2021

A close up of this female ovipositing on my boot!

Click to enlarge
  Ruddy Darter, Faringdon Folly Park Pond, Oxon.

22 July 2021

Now appearing as very smart fully mature adults

Click to enlarge
  Blue-tailed Damselfly, Faringdon Folly Park Pond, Oxon.

22 July 2021

This urban fishing pond used to be the best place in the county for Small Red-eyes. However this species is now to be found at many other sites in the country and I only found modest numbers here (around 10).

Several other common species were to be found.

Click to enlarge
  Red-eyed Damselfly, Tar Lakes, nr Witney, Oxon.

21 July 2021

I visited this site for the first time this year, after a gap of two years. I was hoping that, with the recent widespread dispersal of Small red-eyes around the county, I would find them here as this site appears to have suitable habitat.

However it was not to be - only their slightly larger close relatively were to be seen.

Click to enlarge
  Small Red-eyed Damselfly, Grove Meadows Stormwater pond, Grove, Oxon.

17 July 2021

My first visit to this interesting and relatively newly created site adjacent to yet another new housing estate.

There was a good variety of species to be seen, including good numbers of this favourite of mine.

This photo makes a change from the more usual ones of this species on floating algal mats

Click to enlarge
  Common Darter, Grove Meadows Stormwater pond, Grove, Oxon.

17 July 2021

Challenging subjects as ever to get flight shots of, but I think the Canon R5 helped with this one.

Click to enlarge  
Common Darter, Grove Meadows Stormwater pond, Grove, Oxon.

17 July 2021

Settled on a nearby nicely coloured stem.

Click to enlarge   
  Southern Hawker, Trap Grounds, Oxford.

15 July 2021

Recently emerged and still hanging from its exuvia.

Many thanks to Nicola Devine for showing me around and for spotting this in a remarkably accessible location!

Click to enlarge  
  Common Blue Damselfly,  Standlake Common, Oxon.

7 July 2021

Crop of a focus stacked image.

Click to enlarge
  Broad bodied Chaser,  Boundary Brook NR, Oxford, Oxon.

23 June 2021

My first visit to this compact, urban oasis. There are three ponds, all with the considerable dragonfly potential thanks to the hard work of the Oxford Urban Wildlife Group, membership of which is needed to gain access to this site. 

In addition to two of this species, there were Azure and Large Red Damselflies and three large exuviae - see below. Also an Emperor ovipositing.

This is a hand-held, focus stacked image.

Click to enlarge
  Probable Emperor exuvia,  Boundary Brook NR, Oxford, Oxon.

23 June 2021

With the occupant departed, I wasn't sure of the ID of this exuvia, of which there were three on the smallest, shallow pond. They were far too large for the BB Chaser holding territory. The other pond had an ovipositing Emperor and checking on the web suggests this is the probable ID of this exuvia.

This is a hand-held, focus stacked image.

  Large Red Damselfly,  Barton Fields, Abingdon, Oxon.

9 June 2021

The other more notable species at the fishing pool weren't posing, so I had to settle for this!

This is a hand-held, focus stacked image.

Click to enlarge
  Clubtail,  Goring (Gatehampton) Railway Bridge, Oxon.

5 June 2021

A return visit to this site but unfortunately this adult had deformed front wings and couldn't fly properly

Click to enlarge
  Clubtail larva, Goring (Gatehampton) Railway Bridge, Oxon

1 June 2021

The dragonfly season is now off to an extraordinarily late start with all the poor weather in April and May!

At least it was warm and sunny today and after a few days of this, things are starting to emerge, including Clubtails.

Following a remarkable report of 10+ one one day here last week, I was keen to try my luck at this site, which has to be the best in Oxon for emergences.

Sure enough I saw two emergences. There was also this wandering larva that emerged in the shade under the bridge, briefly walked horizontally along the wall before falling off back into the water.

My just emerged adult photo was affected by very harsh light, so I am not showing it here.
All pictures copyright Stephen Burch

Fatbirder's Top 1000 Birding Websites