Saturday 14th June 2014

   Bit of a trip away this weekend. Two target species, again NOT Birds though.....Black Hairstreak & Norfolk Hawker.

   So the quest begins, the drive to Northamptonshire went well, and we arrive at the first destination....Glapthorn Cow Pastures. If you readers have not been here, and are interested in seeing Black Hairstreaks, this is the place...defo!
Black Hairstreak

Black Hairstreak
   Not only are they here, in decent numbers, they come down and feed on the brambles below eye level.....superb.

   Got some fairly decent shots, but am still getting used to the new sigma 180mm Macro lens i bought. So these are not quite as good as they should have my eye anyway.

   But better than last year, just means i have to go back again...cant wait.

   From there, another long drive to Strumpshaw Fen RSPB, Norfolk. Sadly, my luck changed back to crap again. Same as the weather, the wind got up, and the skies went dull grey. Oh well, we are here now, lets have a go. Norfolk Hawker has eluded my camera for a few years now, and so it seemed it would do again. I walked again the banks of the streams, would nothing at all! Then i saw a Dragonfly, about the right size, fly away from me. I waited, but it didn't come back. Then i kicked up another along the bank, this one flew directly away fro me, across the field and away........CRAP!!!!!

   As i got back to the edge of the wood, with my hopes dashed, for some reason i decided to walk along the edge. I then found one flying around a little clearing. It landed, but flew before i got did this a few times. But then it landed in the grass, in the field, brilliant i thought. I slowly walked over towards it, and was about to lift the camera, when a dog ran straight over it....FFFFFFF*****
Obviously it flew off, and this time i gave up, just not my day...well, afternoon anyway!

  Only thing of note at Strumpshaw, was when i remembered the last time i visited, we saw some Bee Orchids near the Visitor centre. There they were again, but one looked oddly pale. It is probably of the var. flavescens. Sadly they are fenced offf to stop them being eaten, and also behind a garden fence. So i couldn't get as close as i would have liked, but this is what i got anyway....

Bee Orchid (probably var. flavescens)

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