Thursday, 31 July 2008

Sky Watch 3

Summer Clouds

Monday, 28 July 2008

Dragonfly Nymph

Dragonfly Nymphs are the adolescent dragonfly, just before it transforms into an adult. They are from the order 'Odonata', from the Greek word, odous, meaning tooth. They can give sharp bite with their teeth (mandibles) if held carelessly.

These nymphs are short and chunky with wing pads and internal gills. The look like something from a nightmare, they have six legs which are located near the head. Nymphs can be seen on plants, among stones, and leaf litter, most of my sightings are in ponds and on the canal.

Dragonfly Nymphs are predators and feed mostly on other insects in the water. They are known cannibals. Some of the larger species feed on small fish and tadpoles. They catch their food with a toothed lower lip (labium) that is usually folded under the head. When prey comes near, the nymph will shoot out its lower lip to grab it, faster than most prey can react. The lip is then pulled back to the waiting mouth and feeding begins.

They breath by sucking water into its abdomen to move water over its internal gills. Once it has absorbed enough oxygen, the nymph squeezes the water out rapidly so it does not have to come up for air like most pond insects. This also helps jet propel them forwards in the water.

Much of a dragonfly's life is spent in the larval stage where it moults six to 15 times. The nymph crawls out of the water and moults one last time, emerging as an adult with functional wings. Dragonflies and damselflies do not go through a pupal stage to become an adult.

Sunday, 27 July 2008

Banded Demoiselle

One of the our most striking damselflies is the Banded Demoiselle (Calopteryx splendens).. click to enlarge these pictures as the hairy legs are awesome.

Thursday, 24 July 2008

Sky Watch Blog 2

click to enlarge

I was taking pictures of the mill, when I noticed a storm front moving towards Manchester City Center some 8 miles in the distance. My first thoughts we not 'What good pictures these will make'.. but 'Another Sky Watch post in the bag'.
As some of you know already I do not have my own PC and Tom hosts this one for me, I do however get the chance now and then to visit your blogs and see your picture... thank you for visiting here and commenting... I appreciate you all putting up with this one sided blog arrangement and thank you all

Peter Parrott

Wednesday, 23 July 2008


Relaxation at its best

Sunday, 20 July 2008


I'm not 100% sure just what these fledglings are apart from beautiful. Beautiful is a word that will be in my mind today as I say a final farewell to a beautiful, fun, filled friend.

Dedicated to Wendy

Thursday, 17 July 2008

Sky Watcher Defor

Defor Dog

Wednesday, 16 July 2008

June Views

July is turning out to be wet.. so to make up for the rain and drk cloudy skies I show 3 favourites held back from June.

Tuesday, 15 July 2008

Sunday, 13 July 2008

Swallow Tales

I had to stop and watch the work of these Swallows, going backwards and forwards with small bits of grass, and mud. The would fly to the mud-hole with the grass, dip it into the waters edge and cover one end with mud then fly off into the distance to add to their nests. Others would just turn up for mud.. very hectic and hard working.

Thursday, 10 July 2008

Sky Watch Dawn

Dawn 4.25am onwards
Wednesday the 9th July 2008

Can You see the birds?
Joined and Flipped to suit then Cropped,

Shepherds Warning

Perfect Morning and then it changed to a wet grey day

Thanksevery one for viewing and commenting, I really do get a buzz from your comments and appreciate the time you take to make them.. Thank you.

Unknown Bloom

Not to sure what this is but with the blues sky as a background it was just begging to be snapped.

Tuesday, 8 July 2008

I'm taking many shoots of this local landmark mill.. it's days are now numbered and is being taken down soon and housing put in its place. Many are sad to see it go, some are more than happy. I grew up with the mill and feel saddened at it's lost.

Sunday, 6 July 2008


There's a saying in Madagascar that goes

Words are like the spider's web.
A shelter for the clever ones and a trap for the not-so-clever.

Saturday, 5 July 2008

Ugly Ducklings?

No way. these look great.. the only way these could look better was if the were served on a bed of seasonal vegetables, with roast potatoes, and a sweet port and blackberry sauce. ha!

Thursday, 3 July 2008

Sky Watch


This picture was taken on my way home at 02.30 in the morning, the moon was visable but the night never seemed to darken. The sunrise was still 2 hour away, which I didn't get to see as I was snoring and dreaming of a new camera.

Alas I have no P.C. so Tom dose the blog for me... I would just like to thank all who call by here daily and all my Sky Watch friends for there comments and support.

Water on Blade of Grass

This is a really small insect having a drink

Wednesday, 2 July 2008

Embden Geese

These are what I think are Embden Geese, also known as the Bremen. Although it as a German name, this is I think a northern Dutch breed that migrated throughout Europe to Italy where it was imported from to cross-breed with our native white geese. Also known as L'oie d'Emden in France/Belgium. The reason I think it's a Embden, is it's size. these were quite a big goose with plenty of meat on them. I have eat a few of these in the past.. one of the best birds for the table. They are normally kept from Egg production and meat.

Tuesday, 1 July 2008

Giant Gulls

These gulls seem as big as the people behind them.. I would like to tell you these are rare Giant Gulls only found in Wales but alas it's a trick of the eye.