Sunday, 12 October 2014

Looking for Aeshnids

After last weekend in Pia Oac and the not-quite Planaeschna tomokunii, I decided to see if I could find a male. I woke up to a bright and sunny Pia Oac on Saturday morning and soon caught another male Planaeschna gressitti, but from that moment my luck changed. Although I saw quite a few Aeshnids on this in the end rather cloudy day, I failed miserably with the net and did not catch any. Especially bothersome, because some certainly were not P. gressitti, not likely P. cf. tomokunii for that matter. I did get a few better shots of Vestalaria smaragdina this time, and my first andromorph female Ischnura carpentieri, when I spotted what looked like a male ovipositing. Of course in this genus this is not uncommon, but whether or not it is also common in this species I do not know. Otherwise the birding was relatively good, with a large flock of Grey-headed Parrotbill, a new species for me, and pretty dandy Golden Parrotbills in another good flock.

Sunday I went to Tam Dao, to find the real Planeaschna tomokunii, but I did not see anything really, although I was happy to take photos of female Megalestes distans and it was good to see Coeliccia scutellum. This is a common species, but I had been spending relatively little time in places where they occur this summer, so it was good to meet again. Otherwise this day was enlivened with a flock of 24 Crested Serpent Eagles lifting off from a small hill in the plain to start their day's migration.

Female Ischnura carpentieri eating a bug after ovipositing
The male for comparison, note the brighter pterostigmata (amongst others)
Megalestes distans male from Pia Oac
Megalestes distans female from Tam Dao, above the village
Yes, I know, this is a dragonfly page and it is a shitty photo, but hey, recognizable, Grey-headed Parrotbill
Male Vestalaria smaragdina. Note the long inferior appendages and unmarked wings.
Male Noguchiphaea yoshikoae, also from Pia Oac, showing for instance the apical dark spot on the front wing
An amber-winged female of Vestalaria smaragdina. Note the lack of horns on the prothorax. 
Male Coeliccia scutellum, having just dropped the bug it was eating (now on the leaf between the legs)

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