Deep in the sun-searched growths the dragonfly
Hangs like a blue thread loosened from the sky.
~Dante Gabriel Rossetti, Silent Noon
I chased this little dragonfly all over the boat on Saturday. Coaches Matt and Dom(from England) and Marian (from Brazil) were wondering if dragonflies bite and all I could think of is that I really wanted to get a photo — they are such beautiful small creatures. 🙂
|The dragonfly (suborder Anisoptera) is an insect of the order Odonata, with large multifaceted eyes, two pairs of long transparent wings, and a long body. Dragonflies have very good eye sight due to their unique eye structure. Dragonflies typically eat mosquitoes, midges and other small insects like flies, bees, and butterflies. They are usually found around ponds, small streams, and swamps. Another name for them is mosquito hawks.
Dragonflies do not bite or sting humans.
The life cycle of the dragonfly, from egg to death of adult, is from six months to as much as six or seven years. Sometimes female dragonflies lay eggs in the small cleft between mud or moss. Most of their life time is spent in the larval (nymph) form, beneath the water surface, using their gills to breathe, catching other invertebrates, such as tadpoles, or even tiny fish. In the adult (flying) stage larger species of dragonfly can live as long as four months. Dragonflies have about 30,000 facets to their eyes, giving them nearly a 360° field of vision.
In the past some much larger dragonfly species existed. The largest found was an extinct Protodonata from the Permian period with a wingspan of 70-75cm (27.5-29.5″). This compares to 19cm (7.5″) for the largest modern species of odonate, the Central American giant damselfly Megaloprepus coerulatus. The smallest modern species recorded is the libellulid dragonfly Nannophya pygmaea from east Asia with a wing span of only 20mm, or about 3/4 of an inch.
SO here he/she is! In all the glory of the wings and the patterns on its little bitty body.
I love this shot!
Please leave a comment if you stopped by!