A Ruddy Darter (Sympetrum sanguineum) conveniently perched and remained absolutely motionless during a brief local walk today despite a freshening breeze and the somewhat fragile landing post. This species can easily be confused with the Common Darter but the Ruddy male (above) has a waisted abdomen with dark sides to the thorax (although on an immature they may be yellow) and the legs both on the male and female are completely black.
By way of comparison here is an image of a Common Darter (Sympetrum striolatum) taken in August 2010. Note the distinctive yellow patches on the side of the thorax and the yellow stripes on the legs.
P.S. Both our fathers are in hospital at the moment (one for planned surgery, the other definitely not) so it may take me a little while to catch up with everyones' recent blog posts and also respond to comments my readers have kindly left over the last few days but I'll do my very best in the time available to me. FAB.