Monday, 11 May 2015

Pond Dipping

On Sunday afternoon, being finally free to get out, I headed for the forestry below Craig-y-llyn, hoping to have Grasshopper Warbler in the usual place, where the gass pipeline crosses the forest road. I had also hoped for Whinchat on the slopes between the main road and the forest road. Whether it was too breezy, too late in the day, or it just isn't there this year, but I dipped on the Grasshopper Warbler and on the Whinchat too.
On a previous visit I noticed pond skaters in the ditch and as the water was moving, I wondered whether instead of being the Common Pond Skater (Gerris lacustris), they might be the larger, unrelated species Aquaruis najas, which prefers moving water, unlike Gerris. After several uncomfortable minutes of lying on my belly, in a steep, head down position, trying to get a photo of one of them, I finally managed this shot, which proves they are Gerris after all.

Common Pond Skater (Gerris lacustris)

The light wasn't very good, so with the camera's aperture set wider than I would have liked, I got this very poor shot of one of the shy and elusive Water Crickets (Velia caprai) that shared some sections of the roadside ditch with the Pond Skaters.

Water Cricket (Velia caprai)


  1. was thinking the same - partic' the water cricket

  2. Thanks, chaps. Worth lying for 20 minutes, head down on a 30 degree, thistle covered stream bank then ;¬)

  3. I hope you kept your clothes on this time.

  4. Of course not. A man has to have his innocent pleasures, otherwise what's life for?