I had been asked to lead a walk for the Lee Valley Regional Park Authority, which was intended to look at some of the wildlife at Cornmill Meadows - concentrating on the dragonflies in particular. Unfortunately, as can be the case during a typical British summer, the weather wasn't ideal for dragonflies, with largely overcast weather, with only brief sunny periods, and a cooler temperature plus little more wind than is desirable. Nether the less, around a dozen people turned up for the walk so we set off to see what we could find.
We did struggle to find any of the larger dragonfly species, but a good variety of their smaller relatives, the damselflies, were found including the Banded Demoiselles (one of our largest damselflies), and White-legged Damselfly (a scarce species locally). The people who attended the walk were thankfully not only interested in the dragonflies and damselflies, so I was able also able to show them a variety of other species, mostly relatively common, but interesting enough for a short local walk.
The shallow wader scrapes had a number of Lapwings on them, and a Hobby was hunting over the meadows - perhaps as disappointed as us by the lack of dragonflies! Butterflies were also not particularly active, but walking through areas with longer grass disturbed Meadow Browns, Large Skippers and Ringlets, and Peacocks, Red Admirals, and a few 'whites' were also seen. Field Grasshoppers and Roesel's Bush Crickets were also found in the meadows.