Saturday, 4 June 2016

Carlton Marshes ~ 4 June

My first visit to this rather special reserve in the south-eastern corner of the broads. I accessed the southern section via public transport (train to Oulton Broad) here. The northern section would certainly be worthy of a visit too.
Following the track north, a smaller path to the left running alongside a dyke looked promising. As the clouds parted and the temperature began to rise at least 6 Fen Raft Spider (Dolomedes plantarius) began to hunt (primarily ovipositing Variable Damselflies with a very poor success rate).

In terms of Odonata, the site was spectacular, with densities I have only ever seen in the acidic bogs of the New Forest. Variable Damselflies were the most numerous with only small numbers of Azure. Interestingly this population was seemingly very homogenous, with all males observed (200+) looking like classic 'fieldguide' individuals. 

Coenagrion pulchellum

A small number of Scarce Chasers were by the dyke first thing, but as Hairy Dragonfly numbers began to build, they soon dispersed away from the water. 

Brachytron pratense

I had predicted that if the weather forecast was correct, Norfolk Hawkers could begin to emerge and indeed at just after 1 p.m, I found 2 very fresh-looking tenerals. 

Anaciaeshna isosceles

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