Its been a while since I have taken any photos of dragonfly and damselfly nymphs in my indoor photography tank so a few days ago, I cleaned and prepared the tank and filled it up with water so it could all settle before I hopefully introduced a nymph. After spending an hour yesterday morning at Nethergong where in the near flooding stream, I managed to net 6 Banded Demoiselle nymphs of varying sizes, I then called into Grove Ferry where I spent some time netting in a few ditches I have not previously been to. After netting a few damselfly nymphs which I suspected where Azure Damselfly, I finally managed to catch a Hairy Dragonfly nymph of about 20mm in length. Unlike other Hawker nymphs which tend to move after a few seconds in the net, the Hairy Dragonfly nymph folds it legs in and remains motionless and rather like a stick. Unless you have a good check of the net, they could be easily missed. Its only after some time of experiencing their habits, that you make the time to check the contents of the net just in case. With a subject to photograph, I returned home for a photography session with the nymph before returning back to the site later in the day. After introducing the nymph to the water, I let it settle down for a while where thankfully, it found the pond weed which had been placed near the front of the glass. With the camera on the tripod and using manual focus, ISO 400, speed set to 250, F4 - f11 and a flash diffuser, I was able to take a number of pleasing images of this small nymph. With February already just around the corner, it won't be long until the season gets ever nearer. In the mean time, I will hopefully have a few more dipping sessions to see if I can find and photograph any of the species which elude me in north and east Kent
Hairy Dragonfly Nymph (c20mm)
On another note, I have spent a good few hours in the past week updating my website 'A Photographic Guide to the Dragonflies and Damselflies of Kent' which can be accessed by clicking on the 'My Website' link at the top of the page. Photos added include new dragonfly and damselfly images as well as new nymph, exuviae and emergence sequence photos. A good and helpful resource I hope for all those interested in odonata.