Alan Dalton post's birding diaries and original artwork from Sweden. Established in 2006, this now long running blog is now a complete overview of my birding experiences. As an artist I greatly enjoy sketching birds in the field and you will find a wide selection of that work here, from fieldwork to finished paintings. I am very passionate about my artwork and try to depict birds in their natural habitat, as I see them in the wild. My artwork is for sale and can be viewed at
As regards to my photography, since 2008 I have used a Nikon D90 DSLR camera coupled with a Sigma 150-500mm OS lens for since March 2012 for bird photography, all previous images being digiscoped. Regarding sound recording, I have been usung a Telinga Stereo Dat Mic and parabol to record birds in the field, coupled to a Marrantz 661 digital recorder, a superb piece of kit. Interest in butterflies, dragonflies and damselflies has recently seen the accquisition of a Sigma 150mm macro lens. I hope you enjoy the blog and please feel free to leave comments or contact me at

Monday, August 06, 2012

Butterflies and Dragonflies; Broängarna; 6th August 2012

 Brown Hairstreak; The first time I have specifically identified this species, nice to get a decent shot and certainly glad I threw the macro lens into the bag...

 Above and below; A rather tatty Heath Fritillary, this is a good site to see the species..

 Above and below; Essex Skipper. Note the dark tips to the antennae, which seperates the species from it's close relative, the Small Skipper. At least one Small Skipper was also identified in the same area, the two species side by side.

 Small Skipper; Here you can see the fulvous tips to the underside of the antennae tips clearly. The first time I have seperated these two in the field and nice to get shots to demonstrate this..

Hoverfly on Thistle..

 Had a look around today for Dragonflies and Butterflies today, seeing several species with John Costello. Broängarna is a very good site for both. Darters were everywhere, Common Darter, Black Darter and Ruddy Darter were all identified. Brown Hawker(Aeshna grandis) was quite abundant too, as were Moorland Hawker(Aeshna juncea) over the ponds on the golf course, hunting over the water and chasing other species away. The most common of these were Four Spotted Chaser(Libellula quadrimaclata), a few of which were at the ponds. Many more were found at shallow pools with much Yellow Iris, here they were into double figures. In the grass around the whole area Common Bluetuail(Ischnura elegans) was extremely Common. The only blue damsels I looked at proved to be Northern Damselflies(Coenagrion hastulatum) Despite searching we found no Large Redeye(Erythromma najas), they were plentyful at the site we checked last year. A major surprise came late in the outing whn an odonate flew right over us, its banded wings clearly seen by both of us. My first Banded Demoisselle(Callopteryx splendens) flew straight past and kept going, we wondered where it came from as we are not aware of any running water in the area. High above in the skies, dragonflies were hawking everywhere and we wondered what species they were..
 Butterflies were not as plentiful, though, Peacock, Large White and Brimstone were commonplace. My first Brown Hairstreak was very nice indeed, whilst several Skipper sp. were chased down and photographed, the first time I have specifically done so and seperated Essex Skipper and Small Skipper from each other. Also photographed was a single Heath Fritillary, a rather worn example.
All in all a very productive morning out in the field!

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