Beaulieu Heath in the New Forest is a good location for dragonflies and heathland wildlife in the summer. I took a visit there last Sunday and walked from there towards Crockford Stream – though never got as far as the stream on this visit. Between the two is a pond near a risen mound that is good for observing and if lucky photographing dragonflies. This was my second visit to this place of the year – last visits shots included some flying Emperors. This time there were some Emperors still flying about. This time I was fortunate to find a female Keeled Skimmer resting and willing to pose for some macro photographs, including a 3 shot stack.
These are my favourite images of the Skimmer.
This first one is cropped to a more panoramic format.
Keeled Skimmer Panorama Format. Taken on Canon 650D with Canon 100mm F2.8 USM Macro Lens. ISO 400 F7.1 1/500 in Natural Light.
Keeled Skimmer Side On. Taken on Canon 650D with Canon 100mm F2.8 USM Macro Lens. ISO 400 F5 1/1250 in Natural Light.
These next two images are both up close to it’s head. The first is a single shot at F8, the latter a 3 shot stack at a wider aperture of F6.3. I think both work well, and can’t personally choose between them.
Keeled Skimmer Face On. Taken on Canon 650D with Canon 100mm F2.8 USM Macro Lens. ISO 400 F8 1/120 in Natural Light.
3 Shot Stack of Keeled Skimmer. Taken on Canon 650D with Canon 100mm F2.8 USM Macro Lens. 3 Shots at ISO 400 F6.3 1/320 in Natural Light.]
Moving on down the path, I saw my first Grayling Butterflies (Hipparchia semele) of 2014. After several attempts at photographing them, I managed to get one at rest long enough for a 5 shot stack. The only shame was it kept it’s top wing in – when popped up they produce a nice bit of orange colour.
5 Shot Stack of a Grayling. Taken on Canon 650D with Canon 100mm F2.8 USM Macro Lens. 5 Shots at ISO 400 F5.6 1/320 in Natural Light.
I also saw lots of Silver-studded blue butterflies and when photographing the top butterfly in this shot, it was briefly joined by another.
Silver-studded Blues on Heather. Taken on Canon 650D with Canon 100mm F2.8 USM Macro Lens. ISO 400 F5.6 1/400 in Natural Light.
And finally this I saw this grasshopper in the heather.
Grasshopper in the Heather. Taken on Canon 650D with Canon 100mm F2.8 USM Macro Lens. ISO 400 F7.1 1/250 in Natural Light.
Map of Location