With some lovely weather forecast for today, I decided to take a drive over to Nethergong Campsite for another pond dipping session, this time with my youngest daughter Poppy. We arrived mid morning where armed with nets, pots and lots of enthusiasm, we spent an hour or so catching a good variety of damselfly nymphs and 1 Broad bodied Chaser nymph. Its got to be said that on the good looking scale, they do not score highly but I found it interesting to look for a few features to confirm the identification as they do look similar to the Four spotted Chaser and Black tailed Skimmer nymph. Having looked at the brilliant 'Field Guide to the Larvae and Exuviae of British Dragonflies', I could see clearly that the tips of the eyes were above the level of the head and the deeper serrations on the labial palps, key features for Broad bodied Chaser. Please correct me if I am wrong though. After having both caught a few nymphs and had a nice walk around in the sunshine, we called it a day and returned home for lunch. As this is such a dark nymph and normally lives in the mud, I took some time to think how best to photograph it and having already soaked some nice autumnal leaves with red and yellow on them, I prepared the tank for a session. Thankfully this species often sits still and having coaxed it into a few positions, I was able to take a number of photos using manual mode, f8-f16, ISO 400, speed set to 250 and in camera flash used. I think the leaves worked well and I think I will continue to use them as they make for a nice background colour. Hopefully I can get a few more nymphs in the coming weeks to photograph and photograph these often unseen wonders of nature.
Broad bodied Chaser Nymph