With the summer holidays here and a little more time on my hands, I made the drive across to west Kent this morning at 10am in sunny warm conditions to look for the Golden ringed Dragonfly, a particularly scarce species in Kent. On arrival I was shocked at how overgrown the stream was and there was barely any stream actually visible. I decided therefore to do a little gardening and after fighting my way through the undergrowth to the stream, I set about trying to remove some of the overhanging vegetation. C30 minutes later and I could at least now see some stream and hoped that a Golden ringed would find this clearance to its liking. After cooling down with a drink I then spent some time sat stream side where not long after Beautiful and Banded Demoiselles arrived along with a couple of Blue tailed Damselfly and a single White legged Damselfly. Then the star of the show slowly glided by as a female Golden ringed Dragonfly flew in and checked out my gardening. She thankfully approved and landed on some nettles where I was able to move in slowly and take a few shots before a Brown Hawker arrived and they flew off over the bushes.
I waited a little longer and only a brief glimpse of a male flying through so decided to take a walk up the stream to see if any other area were clear enough to hold them. I did find two spots that were just about flowing through and both held male Golden ringed Dragonflies and even better, they were staying in the area and readily perching up. Again I sat down on the edge of the stream where one kept on flying in and landing only a metre or so away. What a stunning dragonfly to have in Kent. On one occasion one male flew up and took out a bumblebee before flying down to a perch further away and spent some time munching. With a couple of hours passing by quickly and plenty of photos and memories made, I made my way back towards the entrance where as I took one more look at my cleared area, a male Golden ringed Dragonfly was perched up. A superb session but worrying that as the years go by, will the stream eventually cease to operate and become overgrown. Maybe next year I will go down earlier and clear some areas in anticipation for their season. Seeing a Golden ringed Dragonfly in Kent is a good day, seeing 3 is magical.