la roque gageac

Dordogne Wildlife Diary

  • Dragons and Damsels

    We recently went to one of the popular local leisure lakes at St Méard de Gurçon run by the Conseil General (equivalent to a County Council in UK). It was mainly to meet up with Audrey's sister and to take the kids swimming. It's set up like a mini coastal beach resort with all facilities...including a sandy beach! Of course I got a bit bored on the beach and so went for a walk around the lake which took about 20-30 minutes. I was rather surprised to see so many Violet Dropwing dragonflies all around the lake - I must have seen between ten and twenty individuals. This species is spreading northwards in SW France. It's a common species in tropical Africa, I remember seeing strange purple dragonflies in Mauritius but never discovered what they were. The species was first recorded in Europe in Spain in the 1970s.

    Another common dragonfly - in fact a damselfly - around the lake was the Blue-eye (or Goblet-marked Damselfly). I see it regularly by the River Dordogne but many still waters too. The goblet mark is on top of the first two segments of the abdomen just below the thorax. The shape of the mark in this location is a good way to separate several of the blue damselflies. The Blue-eye also has characteristic black spear shaped marks pointing towards the head along the abdomen. Other species have blue eyes.


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Welcome to my Dordogne Wildlife Diary

In it you will find regular wildlife sightings in the département of Dordogne, notably of birds and butterflies in southern Dordogne where I live. In adddition there will be occasional references to neighbouring départements such as Lot et Garonne, Gironde, the Lot and places further afield. Check out the Faune-Aquitaine website for the latest wildlife sightings in Dordogne and Aquitaine.

Where possible I will add photographs to illustrate the entry. Many thanks to Margaret Mills (family photo) and Denis Cauchoix (birdwatcher photo).

I hope that you enjoy my diary and look forward to your comments.

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