Thursday, 25 November 2021

Damselflies and Dragonflies in Vestfold in 2021

The following is a selected photographic summery of damselfly and dragonfly observations made during 2021 from Vestfold and Buskerud regions of Norway. It should be noted that the images of Sympetrum striolatum and Sympetrum valgatum, do not always illustrate all or some of  the diagnostic criteria necessary for identification for these two species and are only included for illustration.

Common Spreadwing (Nordmetalvannymfe) Lestes sponsa male - Horten, Vestfold 11/8-21

Common Spreadwing (Nordmetalvannymfe) Lestes sponsa female - Horten, Vestfold 7/7-21

Banded Demoiselle (Båndpraktnymfe) Calopteryx splendens male - Horten, Vestfold 26/6-21
Recently Red Listed status as Near Threatened

Beautiful Demoiselle (Blåpraktvannymfe) Calopteryx virgo male - Drammen, Buskerud 15/7-21

Beautiful Demoiselle (Blåpraktvannymfe) Calopteryx virgo female - Drammen, Buskerud 15/7-21

Blue Featherleg (Fjærbeinvannymfe) Platycnemis pennipes female - Horten, Vestfold 21/7-21

Azure Bluet (Sørblåvannymfe) Coenagrion puella male - Horten, Vestfold 8/6-21

Spearhead Bluet (Spydblåvannymfe) Coenagrion hastulatum male - Horten, Vestfold 8/6-21

Large Redeye (Rødøyevannymfe) Eeythromma najas male - Holmestrand, Vestfold 9/6-21

Migrant Hawker (septemberlibelle) Aeshna mixta male - Horten, Vestfold 14/9-21

Moorland Hawker (starrlibelle) Aeshna juncea male - Horten, Vestfold 19/8-21

Common Clubtail (klubbeelvelibelle) Gomphus vulgatissimus female - Holmestrand, Vestfold 5/6-21
Recently Red Listed status as Near Threatened

Common Goldenring (kongelibelle) Cordulgaster boltonii female - Drammen, Buskerud 15/7-21

Downy Emerald (smaragdlibelle) Cordulia aenea male - Tønsberg, Vestfold 5/7-21

Brilliant Emerald (glansmetallibelle) Somatochlora metallica captured male - Sandefjord, Vestfold 26/6-21

Four-spotted Chaser (firflekklibelle) Libellula quadrimaculata male - Horten, Vestfold 12/6-21

Four-spotted Chaser (firflekklibelle) Libellula quadrimaculata male - Holmestrand, Vestfold 9/6-21

Broad-bodied Chaser (blåbredlibelle) Libellula depressa male - Horten, Vestfold 21/7-21
Recently Red Listed status as Vulnerable. 

Small Whiteface (småtorvlibelle) Leucorrhinia dubia male - Tønsberg, Vestfold 5/7-21

Small Whiteface (småtorvlibelle) Leucorrhinia dubia female - Holmestrand, Vestfold 9/6-21

Ruby Whiteface (østtorvlibelle) Leucorrhinia rubicunda male - Horten, Vestfold 3/6-21

Ruby Whiteface (østtorvlibelle) Leucorrhinia rubicunda - Horten, Vestfold female 12/6-21

Yellow-spotted Whiteface (gulflekktorvlibelle) Leucorrhinia pectoralis - Horten, Vestfold male 12/6-21

Lillypad Whiteface (vannliljetorvlibelle) Leucorrhinia caudalis male - Holmestrand, Vestfold 9/6-21

Black Darter (svarthøstlibelle) Sympetrum danae young female - Horten, Vestfold 18/8-21

Black Darter (svarthøstlibelle) Sympetrum danae female - Horten, Vestfold 18/8-21

Black Darter (svarthøstlibelle) Sympetrum danae male - Sandefjord, Vestfold 2/9-21


Ruddy Darter (blodhøstlibelle) Sympetrum sanuineum male - Holmestrand, Vestfold 17/8-21
ID: Deep red colour, clubbed abdomen, wholly black legs, long moustache, T-shape on thorax & yellow spot on base of wings.

Ruddy Darter (blodhøstlibelle) Sympetrum sanuineum male - Sandefjord, Vestfold 2/9-21
ID: Deep red colour, clubbed abdomen, wholly black legs, long moustache & T-shape on thorax.

Yellow-winged Darter (gulvingehøstlibelle) Sympetrum flaveolum male - Horten, Vestfold 18/8-21
ID: Large yellow area on hindwings with some yellow on forewings, straight sided scarlet coloured abdomen.  


Common Darter (senhøstlibelle) Sympetrum striolatum female - Holmestrand, Vestfold 19/7-21
ID: Yellowish patches on thorax, dark (not wholly black) legs, moustache without vertical lines and shape of vulvar scale (not very visible in this image)..

Common Darter (senhøstlibelle) Sympetrum striolatum male - Sandefjord, Vestfold 5/8-21
ID: Yellowish patches on thorax, dark (not wholly black) legs, moustache without vertical lines.

Moustached Darter (sørhøstlibelle) Sympetrum vulgatum very young female - Sandefjord, Vestfold 5/8-21
 ID: Moustache with vertical lines, pale stripes on thorax, dark (not wholly black) legs, and shape of vulvar scale (not very visible in this image).

Moustached Darter (sørhøstlibelle) Sympetrum vulgatum young female - Horten, Vestfold 20/7-21
 ID: Moustache with vertical lines, pale stripes on thorax, dark (not wholly black) legs, and shape of vulvar scale (not visible in this image).

Moustached Darter (sørhøstlibelle) Sympetrum vulgatum female - Sandefjord, Vestfold 5/8-21
 ID: Moustache with vertical lines, dark (not wholly black) legs, and shape of vulvar scale.

Moustached Darter (sørhøstlibelle) Sympetrum vulgatum  female - Horten, Vestfold 1/9-21
ID: Non of the diagnostic criteria is visible in this image including moustache with vertical lines, dark (not wholly black) legs, and shape of vulvar scale.

Moustached Darter (sørhøstlibelle) Sympetrum vulgatum old female - Horten, Vestfold 11/8-21
ID: Non of the diagnostic criteria is visible in this image including moustache with vertical lines, dark (not wholly black) legs, and shape of vulvar scale.

Moustached Darter (sørhøstlibelle) Sympetrum vulgatum very young male - Horten, Vestfold 4/8-21
ID: Moustache with vertical lines, dark (not wholly black) legs.

Moustached Darter (sørhøstlibelle) Sympetrum vulgatum very young male - Horten, Vestfold 4/8-21
ID: Moustache with vertical lines, pale lines and T-shape on front of thorax, dark (not wholly black) legs. The slightly clubbed abdomen is well illustrated in this example which often differs from Common Darter.

Moustached Darter (sørhøstlibelle) Sympetrum vulgatum young male - Horten, Vestfold 24/7-21
ID: Pale lines on front of thorax and dark legs visible otherwise non of the other diagnostic criteria is visible in this image.

Moustached Darter (sørhøstlibelle) Sympetrum vulgatum male - Sandefjord, Vestfold 5/8-21
ID: Moustache with vertical lines, noticeable yellow striped legs & relatively uniform brown thorax. 

Moustached Darter (sørhøstlibelle) Sympetrum vulgatum male - Sandefjord, Vestfold 5/8-21
ID: Moustache with vertical lines, noticeable yellow striped legs & relatively uniform brown thorax. 













Friday, 19 November 2021

Butterflies & Moths in Vestfold and Buskerud during 2021

This butterfly year was concentrated locally and started off quite well with several new species for my Norwegian list including Northern Wall Brown and Essex Skipper but also several rarely encountered species including Mountain Clouded Yellow, Green-underside Blue and Purple Hairstreak. In early autumn a Blue Underwing moth was added to my all time 'most wanted species' list. However, as no special trips were made to look for some of the Norwegian specialities, totally this butterfly year was a little disappointing one for me. After the first wave of species during early summer many of the late summer species did not appear or at least in very low numbers due presumably to the very warn and dry summer period.  The following photographs illustrate however, the variety of mostly common species that were encountered and the accompanying text explains a little about this years observations.


Essex Skipper (timoteismyger) Thymelicus lineola female - Holmestrand, Vestfold 19/7-21.
 Probably an exceptional year for this scarce species in Norway and one og my 'most wanted species'. Several at a locality near Drammen in Buskerud on 15/7-21 and twenty newly hatched individuals at a locality near Skoger, Holmestrand in Vestfold on 19/7-21. Several more recently reported observations from Vestfold could indicate a southerly extension of the species Norwegian distribution.
        
Essex Skipper (timoteismyger) Thymelicus lineola male - Holmestrand, Vestfold 19/7-21.
 Probably an exceptional year for this scarce species in Norway and one of my 'most wanted species'. Several at a locality near Drammen in Buskerud on 15/7-21 and twenty newly hatched individuals at a locality near Skoger, Holmestrand in Vestfold on 19/7-21. Several more recently reported observations from Vestfold could indicate a southerly extension of the species Norwegian distribution.

Silver-spotted Skipper (kommasmyger) Hesperia comma female - Sandefjord, Vestfold 5/8-21.
Several fresh individuals were found at this known locality near Stokke, Sandefjord on 5/8, which is a rather late date indicating maybe these were a second brood. 

Moorland Clouded Yellow (myrgulvinge) Colias palaeno female - Drammen, Buskerud 15/7-21.
One of my 'most wanted species' this year. Earlier I have encountered fast flying individual's and unable to photograph these beautiful butterflies. This year we found one or two at a locality near Drammen and this one conveniently posed for us for over 15 minuets. 

Small Blue (dvergblåvinge) Cupido minimus male - Horten, Vestfold 26/6-21.
An exceptional year for this species at a locality near Horten. 

Green-underside Blue (kløverblåvinge) Glaucopsyche alexis male - Holmestrand, Vestfold 9/6-21.
Generally rather scarce locally but this year a male was found near Horten in Vestfold on 4/6 and at least two males at another locality near Sande, Holmestrand in Vestfold on 9/6.

Green-underside Blue (kløverblåvinge) Glaucopsyche alexis male - Holmestrand, Vestfold 9/6-21.
Generally rather scarce locally but this year a male was found near Horten in Vestfold on 4/6 and at least two males at another locality near Sande, Holmestrand in Vestfold on 9/6.

Northern Brown Argus (sankhansblåvinge) Aricia artaxerxes female - Drammen, Buskerud 15/7.
Not uncommon and a few were found in suitable habitats. 

Scarce Copper (Oransjegulvinge) Lycaena virgaureae male - Sandefjord, Vestfold 5/8-21.
Not uncommon although never numerous and a few were found at several localities.

Scarce Copper (Oransjegulvinge) Lycaena virgaureae female - Sandefjord, Vestfold 5/8-21.
Not uncommon although never numerous and a few were found at several localities.

Purple Hairstreak (eikestjertvinge) Favonius quercus female - Horten, Vestfold 20/7-21.
Scarcely recorded if not looked for in the right habitat. This individual was a chance observation while photographing several of the commoner White-letter Haistreak's.

Purple Hairstreak (eikestjertvinge) Favonius quercus female - Horten, Vestfold 20/7-21.
Scarcely recorded if not looked for in the right habitat. This individual was a chance observation while photographing several of the commoner White-letter Haistreak's.

White-letter Hairstreak (almestjertvinge) Satyrium w-album - Horten, Vestfold 21/7-21.
Another exceptional year for the species when looked for in the right habitat. 

Cranberry Fritillary (myrperlemorvinge) Bolaria aqyilonaris - Sandefjord, Vestfold 5/7-21.
A normal year for this species at local marshy areas. 

Lesser Marbled Fritillary (Engperlemorvinge) Brenthis ino - Tønsberg, Vestfold 5/7-21.
A fairly normal year for this species. 

Silver-washed Fritillary (keiserkåpe) Argynnis papia male - Drammen, Buskerud 15/7-21.
Good numbers early on in the season but very few later when there should have been plenty. 

Dark Green Fritillary (aglajaperlemorvinge) Argynnis aglaja - Holmestrand, Vestfold 19/7-21.
Good numbers early on in the season but very few later when there should have been plenty.

High Brown Fritillary (adipperlemorvinge) Argynnis adippe - Holmestrand, Vestfold 19/7-21.
Good numbers early on in the season but very few later when there should have been plenty.

Painted Lady (tistelsommerfugl) Vanessa cardui - Horten, Vestfold 7/9-21.
Very few in late summer & early autumn but nevertheless apparently a normal year. This individual graced my garden during early autumn and was only one of two seen this year.

False Heath Fritillary (mørk rutevinge) Melitaea britomartis female - Drammen, Buskerud 23/6-21.
Far less than normal this year. This rather pale individual was one of very few seen this year.

Northern Wall Brown (bergringvinge) Lasiommata petropolitana female - Holmestrand, Vestfold 9/6-21.
One of my 'most wanted' this year. Although not a rare species in Norway, finding this species in Vestfold is not easy and most of the reported observations are in error and refer to the much commoner Large Wall Brown (klipperingvinge) Lasiommata maera. Although these two species are extremely similar in appearance the Northern flies earlier than Large and may be an indication to identification when finding one in May or very early June. 

Arran Brown (fløyelsringvinge) Erebia ligea - Holmestrand, Vestfold 19/7-21.
This common species had a normal year locally.

Blue Underwing (blått ordensbånd ) Catocala fraxini - Horten, Vestfold 28/8-21.
Also known as Clifden Nonpareil, this species may be extinct or at least very rare in the UK, but is regularly captured in mothtraps in Vestfold and is not classed as rare in Norway. This observation was of my third 'most wanted species' this year and was photographed indoors before being released. 

Damselflies and Dragonflies in Vestfold in 2021

The following is a selected photographic summery of damselfly and dragonfly observations made during 2021 from Vestfold and Buskerud regions...