Richard Bell's Wild West Yorkshire Nature Diary, Wednesday, 21st July 2010
GO VIA the towpath instead of up Quarry Hill makes something like five or ten
minutes difference when you walk between Horbury Bridge and Horbury but it's
worth it just to take a brief dip into green space. There are butterflies about
– not as many as I feel there should be – and dragonflies. Striding
along, I'm not going to be able to identify them all.
gatekeeper (right) skits along in front of me but
settles long enough for me to confirm what it is. There are white butterflies
around but I'm afraid that when they're on the wing, at a glance I can't tell
whether they're the small, large or green-veined varieties, or even female orange
tips for that matter. I take the chance to stoop down to take a closer look
at one that has settled; it has prominent veins on the underwing, so that's
the green-veined white, Pieris napi (left).
now have a regular large aeshna dragonfly patrolling our back
garden but flying along just a few inches above the canal there's a blue dragonfly,
about two-thirds the size of the aeshna.
From the bridge, we'd glimpsed green rafts of vegetation floating on the canal. I thought that it was floating pennywort, a North American plant (surprisingly an Umbellifer) that has grown prolifically in recent years, but from the towpath, I can see that it's duckweed.
Pond skaters glide across the water surface.