Linnet and Son
I made my first visit to the North Walney NR today. It is a big reserve and I could really do with some guidance as to which are the best areas and the best times to visit.
The main picture shows two linnets. The lower one is definitely a male but I'm not sure if the upper one is a juvenile or a female.
The first extra is a lovely orchid but I'm not sure which. My thoughts are possibly a Northern Marsh Orchid but I would welcome advice.
The second extra is I think a mating pair of Black-tailed Skimmers. According to Brooks & Cham the females will usually oviposit in the water but if the density of males is high they may oviposit by perching on exposed vegetation. If a male captures the ovipositing female in flight he forms a tandem and then somersaults with her in mid air which causes her to spill her eggs from the vagina thus freeing her passage for copulation. I believe that is what is happening here.