Its that time of the year again where I seem to get quite obsessed with the Norfolk Hawker, who wouldn't though if this national rarity was on your doorstep. I spent a few hours yesterday afternoon at Westbere Lakes in warm sunshine where I was treated to at least 16 Norfolk Hawker which included c10 in both left and right hand dykes just north of the river. With a bit of time on my hands, it was nice at times to just sit back and watch them and in doing this, get to learn about their habits etc. As I walked the dykes during late afternoon, I come across 3 mating pairs which gave me the chance to fire off a number of photos and also saw 2 females ovipositing in the dyke, their rattling wings in the reeds drawing attention to their whereabouts. With a good amount of perching males holding territory, this gave me the chance to obtain a few more photos but also try for a few flight shots. As most will know, this is not the easiest challenge as in a second or two, you have got to lock onto the dragonfly in flight, focus and fire off shots. Most shots end up either out of focus, bits of body and wings missing, blank screens or wrong settings but every now and then you get lucky. I would like to think that the perseverance put in paid off for the shots I did get and I was quite pleased with them. However, I shall be back for more to try and improve on these if thats possible. Other dragonflies noted were 6 Scarce Chaser, 3 Hairy Dragonflies, a few Red eyed Damselfly, lots of Blue tailed Damselfly and good numbers of Banded Demoiselle along the river. With a few hundred shots taken, I decided to call it a day and made my way back to the car. No doubt a few more visits to be made if I can make the time and the weather allows after work or during weekends but I expect I will put up a few more blog posts in the next week or so on these superb dragonflies, I certainly have enough photos to go through!
Norfolk Hawker (mating pair)
Norfolk Hawker (Pair in tandem)