The Way I See Things


The morning after the night before

I was back at Ham Wall just after 6am, and back with the roosting chasers by 6.30. It was fun to watch them start to move around as the early sunlight reached and warmed them, and to see little squabbles break out as the dragons lower down the stems tried to climb higher into the light, only to find that there were others in their way.

After about four hours of wandering around the RSPB reserve, I made a quick coffee stop and then went over to Westhay Moor. I'd hoped that Westhay would be teeming with Hairy Dragonflies, but when I arrived it was overcast, windy, and none too warm, and the dragons were nowhere to be seen. I walked the entire reserve though, just because, and photographed a few birds, including a hobby that was also hunting dragonflies. I hope it had more luck than me. After about an hour the sun came out and the wind dropped, at which point the dragons re-emerged (along with about a squillion midges), but they were warm and fast and I was warm and tired, so we failed to connect in any meaningful way. Other people have told me that Westhay Moor is a superb reserve - and in fact Victoria Hillman was leading a successful photo workshop there at the same time as I was trudging around it with my teeth gritted - but I haven't learned to love it yet. Maybe next year.

I had hoped to post a Hairy Dragonfly today, but the only one I found all day was at Ham Wall, late in the morning in very strong, contrasty light, and he didn't photograph particularly well. And I did, after all, go to Somerset with the specific intention of photographing the Four-spotted Chaser roost, so I hope you'll forgive me posting it twice. If you're not completely Chasered out by now, I've put a few more photos from Sunday's shoot here.

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