Photographer's Note

I don't know if this is the hawkers' equivalent to the Mile High Club, but this pair of Aeshna Mixta (migrant hawkers) decided to settle high up in the rushes in mid stream. Our local brook is about 4 meters wide at this point, and so far, I'd only tested round the edges. Rubber boots are only so high, and I didn't care much for having to walk home soaked to the thighs in rather stinking water ;-) But today my dachshund tested the waters for me, and when a dachshund can walk there, it's not so very deep, I reckoned. Therefore, I jumped in and set about catching the pair in action. They were very obliging and stayed in position for at least 10 minutes, allowing me to take a great number of photos (had time to change the batteries in mid-action, too..)
When the mating was over, the pair flew off in tandem along the brook. Two days ago I'd spotted another female hawker laying her eggs in some rushes a little further upstream, so I decided to check this spot again, hoping to find the wee lady there busily securing the next generation. However, I shouldn't be so lucky. What I did find was a male - possibly the above male - resting in the rushes along the stream. He sat calmly rubbing his head a little with his forelegs, but apart from that he didn't move, not even with the camera 10 cm from his face. Even caught a small video sequence of him.
Treatment: Dog: Soap and water :-). Photo: Crop, colour +5, Contrast +5, Saturation +5. USM, resize and upload.
To Michael: I'd love to be able to show you the egglaying of one of these creatures, but unfortunately the weather has changed drastically here - from 26 degrees Indian Summer yesterday to about 10 degrees, rain and wind today. The latter is normal for Denmark this time of year, so unless it changes back, I'm not likely to witness any more egglaying this year :-((
Robert Brown has at least one photo of another type of hawker egglaying, though, so check his pictures.
To Gary: This type of hawker has a body length of about 61-66 mm and a wingspan of some 82-85 mm. So, the photo does make them look larger than they really are. The stem he's clinging to is probably about 1 cm in diameter.

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Additional Photos by Bente Feldballe (milloup) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 608 W: 65 N: 329] (1829)
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