How to tell a dragonfly from a damselfly

Dragonflies and damselflies are closely related cousins in the Odonata family but it isn’t difficult to tell them apart.

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Email from Clive: This plant has been slowly developing, it’s about a metre high now. My app says Wild Carrot but we all know it’s is not reliable so over to you. If you need more pics let me know.

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Yesterday, while surveying pollinator networks in the reserve, Ian Bushell discovered a colony of bright pink pyramidal orchids (Anacamptis pyramidalis), an important new species for the reserve.

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Thick legged flower beetle

An irridescent green, female Oedemera nobilis, known as the thick legged flower beetle or swollen thighed beetle, photographed in the park this week. It is the male (see below) that has the strangely shaped legs for which the species is named

[1] by Gail Hampshire (CC BY 2.0); [2] © Hans Hillewaert (CC BY-SA 4.0)

Spindle Ermine Moth

To improve the reserve as habitat and increase its biodiversity, the Friends have been planting trees for years: whips and saplings of many different species to thicken the hedges and copses.

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Every year there is quiet competition among Friends and Followers to see who can send in the first picture of the reserve’s common spotted orchids. This year the winner is Gill Newbury: well done, Gill!

As the weather finally warms up, keep a look out for our grass snakes. A youngster, no more than 20cm long, was seen swimming in the pond last week: probably one of last autumn’s hatchlings.

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Thank you!

While the noisier wing of the media has posted loud banner headlines about Bank Holiday Litter Louts, you have kept our reserve pristine. Yesterday, when the Friends met for their Wednesday work party, even the car park was litter-free. Thank you.

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