Southern Hawker

Southern Hawker

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As we were treated to another lovely day today I decided to visit a nature reserve I’d never been to before; so after a little research I zoomed off to the pretty Worcestershire village of Feckenham, deposited my car in the village car park and set off on foot for Feckenham Wylde Moor. The reserve is about a mile from the car park, along a stony lane which is partly lined with houses, smallholdings and a furiously noisy beagle hunt kennel.

Part way along the lane is a hedgerow which was being worked by Common Darter and Hawker dragons, so I slowed and stalked a few of them – without success, until this beautiful Southern Hawker came to rest and I was able to take a portrait shot of him. Photographically, this was the high spot of my day, so I might just as well have gone back to the car at this point and pushed off back home. But if I had I would have missed a peaceful couple of hours sitting all on my own in a bird hide, watching the wildlife on a small lake.

There wasn’t all that much about – some Mallards, a Tufted Duck, a Coot and a juvenile Moorhen on the water; a couple of circling Buzzards, and a small flock of Swallows which skimmed the water surface every few minutes; plus a large number of Darters and Hawkers working the edges of the reed bed. But the temperature was perfect for sitting in a north-facing hide with the windows up, and despite the relative discomfort of the bench I was entirely happy and relaxed, just watching Nature getting on with doing its thing.

I was very much less happy, after completing my circuit of the reserve across some treacherously uneven and marshy ground and getting back to the lane, when I discovered that I’d lost my ancient but treasured RayBan Wayfarers. The thought of retracing my steps across that terrain to look for them was just too daunting, so I had to leave them behind. If you should happen to be down at Feckenham and stumble across a pair, please do remember that they’re mine!