Monday 18th June 2012 - Hillditch Pool...the return

Late morning there was another break in this summer's dire weather and it actually felt fairly mild so I decided to re-visit Hillditch Pool for another look at the Odonata (dragonflies and damselflies to you and me).

On arrival it soon became apparent that there was more than one Scarce Chaser present.  After walking the length of the pool a number of times to obtain a more accurate count I recorded 6 Scarce Chasers in total.  To see this species in Worcestershire you would normally have to go to the River Avon in the South east of the county, so to see 6 here I was absolutely elated!

For more information on Worcestershire's Dragonflies click on the below link:
Dragonflies of Worcestershire

What was also apparent was the numbers of Red-eyed Damselfly, Azure Damselfly and Blue-tailed Damselfy that were seen copulating...amazing what a bit of better weather can do!  Also noted today were 2 Large Red Damselflies and a ♂ Banded Demoiselle.  On a rather macabre note a Blue-tailed Damselfly was observed and photographed eating another damselfly, something which I had never seen before.

As with seemingly everywhere this summer there was a notable lack of butterflies with the exception of a single Red Admiral.  A small number of day flying moths were also present including 1 Yellow Shell and 2 Common Carpet Moth.  A handful of Pammene aurana were also noted on the umbilifer flowers.

Small numbers of Bloody-nosed Beetles were also noted at the site.  This beetle gets it's name from  its defensive behaviour of exuding a bright red fluid from its mouth.  As well as providing a visual deterrent, the fluid is foul-tasting and puts of birds and other would-be predators from potentially feeding on the beetle

Scarce Chaser (Libellula fulva)

Red-eyed Damselfly (Erythromma najas)

Azure Damselfly (Coenagrion puella)

Blue-tailed Damselfly (Ischnura elegans)

Bloody-nosed Beetle (Timarcha tenebricosa)


  1. You've hit a rich seam of odonata there, Jason. Just not seeing the variety around here at the moment. A few red admirals, meadow browns, the odd large skipper, otherwise also a butterfly drought.
    Don't think I'll resort to snacking on Bloody-nosed beetles if I get stuck without food!

  2. Really great, the damselflies, chaser and Bloody-nosed Beetle. I have never seen the beetle before, fantastic. You must have a macro or very good camera, what is it?

  3. You are doing well with those Scarce Chasers Jason, great photos!

  4. Well done Jase, you made the best of that bright interlude :-) Love to have a scarce chaser here, mind you any chaser is scarce here!

  5. Rob - I'm thinking of calling this year 2012: An Odonata Odyssey! You right on the butterfly front, I've only seen one Meadow Brown so far this year.

    Bob - Cheers mate. I only use a compact digital camera bob (I don't have a DSLR or bridge camera). The one I use is a Samsung's got a reasonable macro mode on it and duel image stabilisation.

    Jan - Cheers. I'm making the most of these dragonflies at the mo as there is very little else around!

    Warren - I've had to make the most of the bright interludes mate...they are few and far between this year!

  6. Great set of photos, Jason, on a compact too - respect! Those chasers look like real characters. Glad you're able to get out and enjoy the sunny spells.

  7. Thanks Omi...I'm trying to get the most out of my humble compact...can't afford a DSLr at the present time