a lifetime burning

By Sheol

Chasing the weather

I had planned to spend today either on the Mendips or on the Somerset Levels, doing some walking and taking some wildlife photographs.  Before setting off I double checked the forecast.  The Met Office was pretty clear that there was only a 10% chance of rain on the Somerset Levels for every hour that day until early evening, so off I set.  At the last minute I threw my waterproof into the car, just in case.

I arrived just as it started raining.  Checking my phone the Met Office weather app was giving me an alert for possible thunderstorms that afternoon.  On looking at the app in detail it seems that it had changed  (in just the last hour) and that there was now an 80% chance of very heavy rain from 1pm, but that the morning would only be showery.  I know that weather forecasting isn't a precise science but even so....

My main is a shot of a 4 spotted chaser resting on a nettle leaf.  (Libellula quadrimaculata in the Latin, which is quite a mouthful). He's looking bright and freshly minted this early in the season.  I say he, as the males and females are alike and I've never been able to work out how to tell them apart.

I've included an extra of a large Yellow Legged Gull (very similar to the Herring Gull) attacking a Grey Heron, who has, in response, raised its crest while simultaneously pulling its neck back in a bit!  I've no idea of why the gull was bothering the heron, it hadn't just caught a fish.  Possibly the gull wanted to sit on the platform without the heron there, or perhaps it was just tormenting the heron because it gets its kicks from bullying other birds?  Those helpful people on the RSPB Facebook group tell me that the larger white headed gulls tend to see herons as potential nest predators and therefore will often attack them when they see them, as a mater of course.

Finally, just because it is terribly cute, the final extra is of a swan looking fondly at its cygnet.

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