Wednesday, 2 August 2017

Mothers Meeting

Whilst checking the ditches on Pevensey Levels this week, I came across a hotbed of egg laying activity by several Brown Hawker (Aeshna grandis) females. They had taken to resting on a discarded fence post that was floating amongst the water weed. They were not only ovipositing into the weed but also into the sodden crevices of the wood. At one time, there were five females on the log but too far apart to get into a single photograph.
Brown Hawker (Aeshna grandis) (ovipositing females) 

Later on the same walk, I spotted an aberrant Small Copper (Lycaena phlaeas) flying along the trackside. Most of the submarginal copper band on the hindwing was absent. As far as naming this aberration is concerned, it is somewhere between radiata and obsoleta and probably best described as a transitional form of obsoleta.
Small Copper (Lycaena phlaeas) (female) (transitional form of ab.obsoleta)

This morning, I decided to take advantage of a small window of warm and dry weather, before rain was due to set in by lunchtime. I saw several nursery webs of the Fen Raft Spider (Dolomedes plantarius). Although it was warm and dry, the weather was also dull and breezy and this kept the nursing females out of sight and probably just below the top layer of leaves.
Fen Raft Spider (Dolomedes plantarius) (mass of spiderlings within the nursery web)

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