Kiss of Death

Friday afternoon was quite pleasant despite a fresh northerly straight off the sea.  Thought it would be nice to have a wander around Upton Fen looking for dragonflies.  One area was particularly good, an area of cut reed on the edge of the woodland, nicely sheltered.  A newly emerged Migrant Hawker (Aeshna mixta), wings soft and shiny, struggled into flight.  Seconds later it’s brief life was snuffed out as a patrolling Brown Hawker (Aeshna grandis) took advantage of an easy meal.

bh DSC_0031a Brown Hawker
Not for the squeamish but this is nature

All this happened right at our feet!  Mrs H was not overly impressed, I was ecstatic.  The image above has created quite a stir on a dragonfly facebook group, not something that is often witnessed let alone photographed.  The Brown Hawker is a big dragon it’s body 3 inches (75mm) long, the Migrant Hawker is 2.5 inches (63mm).  The brown didn’t eat all the migrant it was soon airborne catching more ‘normal’ prey.  I think it was just taking advantage of something weaker.

bh DSC_0042a
The Brown Hawker with a normal catch

32 thoughts on “Kiss of Death

    1. Thanks for the ‘like’ Argus, I guess this post will not be to a lot of people’s taste. I do like to record what I see around me and this was an amazing sight I have never seen before.


      1. You’ve posted the reality you saw and I for one am very interested in seeing what you saw and learning more about their behaviour. I don’t see any harm in learning that appearances can be deceiving – a very valuable lesson especially when applied to other humans!

        Liked by 1 person

  1. Nice capture! It’s one thing to see something like this but quite another to have the presence of mind to quickly realize what you are seeing and then getting the camera to your face to capture it.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’ve witnessed the circle of life play out time and time again behind the shutter, but never witnessed it in the dragon world. Quite fascinating and would have never expected it until I saw your shot. A rare moment caught forever. Nicely done.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Brian, thanks for visiting our spot from across the pond! What a pleasant introduction to your own website with a spectacular photograph!

    It’s not often we have a chance to even observe a moment like a dragon preying on another dragon, much less producing a memorable and quality photograph of the event!

    Nicely done!

    (Now – I’m off for another cuppa so I can review your previous posts.)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Glad you like the post, it was an exciting moment (not for the victim!) Hope you see more in my blog to enjoy. Though I’m a bit short on bird images I have managed one or two I’m pleased with


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