Pond Life

This is life from the garden pond, and some of the life forms that have appeared there since I built it back in May of this year.

I only have a small back garden, so the pond had to be small, but I managed to plant some marginal plants and some underwater oxygenating plants to try to help keep it balanced and healthy.

The first to appear were the Culicine mosquito larvae, a few at first and then the waters began to teem with them.Β They appeared to be feeding on algae which had soon taken hold on the rocks and stones. I generally find the larvae hanging from the surface of the water at an angle as they breathe air through a tube near the tip of the abdomen.

The mosquito larvae attracted predacious beetle larvae like the Great Diving Beetle (Dytiscus Marginalis) as seen below. I photographed this in the shallows as it fed on a mosquito larva. It is in an eraly stage of development.

The mosquito larvae soon changed into pupae in readiness for the adult flies, completing the insect cycle, which in warm weather, and from egg to adult, can take just two weeks. These pupae do not feed, but move rapidly through the water in jerking motions to avoid predation.

I saw tiny silvery beetles crawling over the flat stones in the shallows. I believe this is a Laccobius species, which are mainly scavengers.

There were insect in the air also, damselflies and hoverflies circled and landed to investigate this new waterhole. The hoverfly below is called the Sun Fly (Helophilus pendulus), and has become a regular visitor.

Rat-tailed maggots appeared in the water, larvae of a fly similar to the above, with long tales which helps them breath underwater. They feed on decaying matter.

A water boatman nymph, coloured like amber, was seen swimming beneath the surface of the water. It is called the Lesser Water Boatman (Corixa punctata).

I feel very lucky and privileged to have witnessed life take a hold in the garden pond, and will look forward to the coming days, months and years to see what else I may discover.

8 thoughts on “Pond Life

  1. It’s surprising how life appears in a pond so quickly. It was the same with our pond. Within a year frogs and newts had found it – and I’m still intrigued from where. The macros are great. Can I ask how did you contain the ‘models’? A shallow white tray?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank Paul. Yes, I was rather surprised how the pond has become colonised so quickly, and after a few murky moments with the water it has now balanced itself quite nicely. I contained the creatures in a small, white crock dish so it limited their movements before placing them back in the pond. The other macros are in situ as I did not want to disturb them.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Your photography is spectacular. Thank you for identifying and describing what you’ve found in your small garden pond. I know so little about insects – it’s daunting to know where to begin. I bought my first insect guide on dragonflies/damselflies. Any recommendations for a beginner bug watcher?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for your lovely comment πŸ™‚ Recommendations, just stop, look and listen. Observe, make notes, take photographs if you can. Its a bit like being a detective at times, especially when you come across something you have not seen before. After reading your excellent blog on the nature of N.Y. I am sure you will do just fine! πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thanks, Pete, for the encouragement. I take your advice to heart: stop, look, listen. That’s how I learned about birds and mammals. On to the insects! Your site helps. : )

        Liked by 1 person

Your thoughts ...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.