On the face of it the weather looked promising for a nature reserve trip this morning, but when I checked on line thunderstorms were forecast for the entire area. After hovering and havering for a while, I decided that it was foolish to risk being caught out in the open – or worse yet, in woodland – by a storm, and I was safer staying close to home, so I went off around the village with the macro while it was still fine. As well as the usual suspects, I made two nice unexpected finds: the first White-legged Damselfly I’ve seen this year; and this Roesel’s Bush Cricket nymph, which I was very lucky to spot, and pleased to have managed to photograph, because he was less than a centimetre long.
I was keeping an eye out for Orthoptera nymphs as I went round the butterfly field, because I know they emerge round about now, but because I just look for insects rather than sweeping with a net, I thought that my chances of finding one were slim. But at almost the exact spot where I regularly saw an adult RBC last summer, this weeny little chap, who was up on the grass stalk on the left at the time, made a twitchy little movement as I walked past that was enough to draw my eye. We then both spent several minutes moving very slowly – he down onto this leaf from which he could spring away if necessary, and me into a crouch to try to bring the camera level with him, while inching steadily forward. He sat remarkably still while I took my photos, and only reacted when I removed the camera and reached my hand forward to try to measure him against my little fingernail – that was clearly too much for him, and he leapt away.
To my irritation, the promised storm didn’t arrive – which isn’t to say, of course, that I wouldn’t have been hit by one if I’d gone off to a reserve – so this afternoon R and I cleaned the windows. Which is why (I probably don’t need to tell you) it’s absolutely heaving down right now.