The dry season begins

Two weeks ago we had a deluge – 150 mm or thereabouts in 24 hours – to cap off the wettest March on record. It seems to have been the last of the Wet (fingers crossed!), because we haven’t had any rain since then. Days are mostly sunny and getting up to 29C or so, while nights drop to low 20s.

The garden is full of butterflies and dragonflies – dozens of Chocolate Soldiers (Junonia hedonia), lots of Migrants and Euremas, and a good sprinkling of Orchard Swallowtail, Clearwing Swallowtail, Pale Triangle, Cairns Birdwing (lovely female feeding on Ixora this morning), Common Crow. Blue-banded Eggfly, though, aren’t around, and the Common Eggfly are rare, not common, at the moment.

Dragonfly species have changed relative numbers. The orange-and-yellow ones which dominated the population are still present but have been overtaken by Neurothemis stigmatizans and another which is similar but has dark wingtips:

Dragonfly - gold body, dark wingtips
As for the spiders, we still have lots of St Andrews Cross, Astracantha and Silver Orb-weavers but the brown-and-gold Common Orb-weaver are back for the first time in months.

3 thoughts on “The dry season begins”

  1. Updates and corrections, June 1, 2011:
    Now that I’ve had a bit more time to research them I find that the dragonfly pictured is, in fact Neurothemis stigmatizans as well: the females are gold with dark wingtips, and males are either gold or red (I think males are gold when young and red when older, but I’m still not sure), with clear wingtips in either case. So the one in the post above is a female and the one linked from the post is a male.
    Also, I have identified the ‘orange-and-yellow ones’. They are Australasian Slimwings and can be seen here.

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