Thursday, 2 May 2013

A week in Sri Lanka - part 5

This actually isn't the final post, as I looked at my pics and decided that there were too many to cover all the non-bird fauna of Sri Lanka from my recent trip in one go. So here's the invertebrates, and I'll do one more for the non-bird vertebrates. Be warned, this post contains a BIG spider, proceed with caution if spiders aren't your thing...

This one just blew me away with its iridescent beauty. It's a Shining Gossamerwing, one of several that we saw displaying, demoiselle-style, over a stream in Kanneliya rainforest.

A large, common dragon, which my sources tell me is Asian Tigertail - great name. This one was right outside my hotel room in Negombe.

A marshland butterfly, Neptis hylas aka Common Sailor, seen on an early-morning walk. In the heat of the day, butterflies were almost impossible to photograph as they just didn't stop.

This gorgeous mantis was in my hotel room (the bathroom, which is open to the elements) one night. I was a little tipsy from one too many Lion beers and had quite a long conversation with it. The next morning it was still there so we took it outside for some photos before placing it in a palm tree.

I guess this is a bumblebee species, albeit a gigantic, dark blue one. ID to follow if I get round to it...

This lovely little damsel is apparently a Coromandel Marsh Dart. Closely related to our own Small Red Damselfly.

Lots of these flying together near the top of Sigiriya. Fantastic-looking things. I guess I have a male and female here. They are Common Picturewings.

Three marshland dragonflies. This is a female Pied Paddy Skimmer...

 ... and this is a male Pied Paddy Skimmer. I am loving these names. And I am indebted to RoyW from the RSPB forums for providing the IDs.

This one is Slender Skimmer. An Orthetrum species, so closely related to our own skimmer dragonflies.

Three unidentified butterflies from the marsh now. Seen through a haze of leaves, a lovely butterfly which I can narrow down to Satyrinae but no further. Again, ID to (possibly) follow.

This is clearly a skipper species, but again I don't know which one.

Now this, I feel reasonably sure, is either a Long-tailed Blue or a very closely related species. I saw several of these but only this one had its tiny 'tails' intact.

A Scarlet Basker, not currently basking. Seen by a lake where we stopped for a short roadside break on the way from Dambulla to Galle.

 On Negombe beach there were loads of these small crabs, skittering along and nipping into their burrows in the sand.

This dragon is an Indigo Dropwing. Photographed at Kanneliya.

Any arachnophobes still reading? I did warn you... this beauty, from Kanneliya again, is a Giant Wood Spider. And giant she was, those legs would comfortably span the average human face :)

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