Sunday, 29 March 2015

'Moulted' Brown Hawker Nymph!

A check of one of my tanks after work this week revealed that the Brown Hawker had moulted during the day and its skin was floating complete on the surface of the water. This is the first time it has moulted since I have started rearing it during the winter and after a brief search I could see the quite 'white' Brown Hawker nymph hiding away. Throughout the evening the pigment started appearing on the body and within a few hours, it was back to its dark colouring. With the first day of summer today, someone tell the forecast that, I had a while trying to photograph one of my favourite dragonfly nymphs and tried to capture some of the key features. I find the Brown Hawker nymph one of the most striking nymphs to look at, the light bands on the thorax leading to the back of the head, the dark bands on the legs are all significant features helping with the id of this species. I spent some time this afternoon taking a number of photos from different angles and using AV mode, manual focus, f8, ISO 400 and speed at around 200 I managed to get a number of pleasing images.

 'Moulted' Brown Hawker Nymph (side view)

'Moulted' Brown Hawker Nymph (underside)

'Moulted' Brown Hawker Nymph Labial Mask

Its amazing that this is only a moulted exuvia and that the nymph continues to grow well in the tank. I hope if I keep looking that I may see see one of these nymphs moult in the next few months, it must be some sight to witness. Hopefully soon the first Large Red Damselflies will emerge, iv'e prepared a tank for these with a few green sticks for them to climb up and emerge. Three more days at work and then I have got 2 weeks off for Easter. Fingers crossed for some better weather and an opportunity to photograph the Large Red Damseflies emerging and who knows, maybe a Hairy Dragonfly if I am lucky when i'm out and about. 

'Moulted' Brown Hawker Nymph (underside)

'Moulted' Brown Hawker Nymph (top side)

 The 'Business' End of a Brown Hawker Nymph

'Moulted' Brown Hawker Nymph (side view)

'Moulted' Emperor Dragonfly Nymph (top) and Brown Hawker Nymph (bottom)


  1. Fantastic work Marc, the Emperor Dragonfly is so proud of being filmed by you.

  2. Fingers croseed indeed for some decent weather over the next 2 weeks Marc :-) Happy dragon Hunting!

    1. Everything seems a little late but I do hope for some nice warm sunshine. Iv'e been waiting a while, camera lenses all clean and ready to go!