QMUL Canalside

Some recent photographs from the Regent’s Canal as it passes though the QMUL campus.

Chorthippus Parallelus - Meadow Grasshopper
Chorthippus Parallelus – Meadow Grasshopper

There were several of these grasshoppers chirping away, trying to find a mate. They were very approachable, not vanishing just as the shutter clicks. Common species, both male and female have short front wings and no hind wings.

Coenagrion Puella - Azure Damselfly
Coenagrion Puella – Azure Damselfly

Look down in any weedy area of a pond or canal at this time of year and you’ll see clouds of these damselflies flitting around. The males of this species are bright blue with black banding. The females, like in the photograph above are  vivid green with black banding. This species is much less skittish than many others, they will quite happily land on an outstretched hand.

Female Anax imperator - emperor dragonfly
Female Anax imperator – emperor dragonfly

The queen of the canal. The emperor dragonfly is one of my favourite photographic subjects, the female in the photograph has just been mated (I missed this) and is now laying her eggs inside the weeds. The male is vivid blue, while the female is green with blue patches.

Male Sympetrum striolatum - Common darter dragonfly
Male Sympetrum striolatum – Common darter dragonfly

As the name suggests, the common darter is both common and darts about a lot. This male was resting on the bank-side, dashing off every few seconds, then returning to the same position on the bank. The male has a  deep red marking on its back, as above. The female is a duller brown-ish colour.