|Black-Tailed Skimmer (Orthetrum cancellatum)|
So what did I find out about these lovely creatures:
- As I mentioned above they pose nicely, well the males like to rest in the sun on bare patches of shore next to water.
- They are 40-49mm in length so not the biggest of dragonflies.
|A pair mating on a path.|
- True to their name they fly swift and low, skimming the water surface. They also fly low over gravel and mud.
- Hunting starts from perches and they wait for prey like butterflies, grasshoppers and damselflies. Once they see one they pounce on it.
- The males are territorial and patrol a stretch of bank or shore of around 50m.
- You will find these dragonflies between May and August.
- They are most common in the South East of England, but are found in most of England and Wales, a bit more scare where I am in the North and hardly at all in Scotland.
|Male watching me as I tried to get a close up|
- I was surprised to find out they were first recorded in the UK in 1939!
- Another interesting thing I found is that they seem to like new made pools like flooded gravelpits and reservoirs.
- If you want to know more about their life cycle check out my most popular post so far - lifecycle of a dragonfly - but also see this amazing set of photos of a Black tailed Skimmer emerging from a nymph.
Here's a few sites with more information:
Hope you enjoyed.