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Dragonflies & Damselflies Page 14

Image Taken on 03 Jul 2018 at 14:44    Image of day on 26 Aug 2018

A brightly coloured mature male Ruddy Darter Dragonfly on the desiccated leaves of a bramble stem cut because it was growing over a path.
Keeping the paths navigable is an endless task at this time of year.

Ref: 20180826_d72_20180703_1444_065 ruddy darter dragonfly male(r+mb id@576).jpg

Image Taken on 04 Oct 2016 at 15:09    Image of day on 19 Nov 2016

After a week or two of absence this Ruddy Darter Dragonfly was out warming itself in the sunshine despite a cold wind. As the summer fades dragonflies make use of any sunshine in their search for a final mating.

Ref: 20161119_df3_20161004_1509_070 ruddy darter dragonfly male(r+mb id@768).jpg

Image Taken on 21 Aug 2016 at 13:27    Image of day on 12 Oct 2016

If you have a pond and push an angled stick onto the top that overhangs the water, Darter Dragonflies will often choose it for a look-out post. We used this Willow stick and despite already spouting (as willows do) this male Ruddy Darter likes the perch.

Ref: 20161012_df3_20160821_1327_028 ruddy darter dragonfly male(r+mb id@768).jpg

Image Taken on 07 Aug 2013 at 12:36    Image of day on 26 Sep 2013

The first of the year's Ruddy Darter Dragonfly glowing in the fickle sunlight.

Ref: 20130926_df1_20130807_1236_101 ruddy darter dragonfly male (crop)(r+mb id@768).jpg

Image Taken on 22 Jul 2008 at 16:31    Image of day on 04 Aug 2008

Darter dragonflies are smaller than Hawker Dragonflies. They tend to perch on twig, dash out for a fly round, and then return.

Ref: 20080804_da1_20080722_1631_062 ruddy darter dragonfly male (web crop)(r+mb id@576).jpg

Image Taken on 22 Jul 2008 at 16:36    Image of day on 04 Aug 2008

In this detailed shot you can see it is 'dusty' even over the eyes. When he has warmed up he will probably 'preen' himself clean.

Ref: 20080804_da1_20080722_1636_101 ruddy darter dragonfly male (web crop)(r+mb id@576).jpg

Image Taken on 21 Sep 2008 at 12:50    Image of day on 11 Oct 2008

This is the only 'Ruddy Darter' dragonfly we have seen on our patch and was a rather old and darkened individual on possibly his last day with the weather cooling down. He sat quietly in the sunshine on a leaf as we took his portrait and later flew off

Ref: 20081011_dc1_20080921_1250_405 ruddy darter dragonfly male head detail (web crop)(r+mb id@576).jpg

Image Taken on 18 Aug 2012 at 13:58    Image of day on 29 Sep 2012

This Ruddy Darter is an intermediate sized dragonfly that will perch on a stick hanging out over the water as seen in the second image.

Ref: 20120929_da1_20120818_1358_032_ft1 ruddy darter dragonfly male in flight (crop)(r+mb id@768).jpg

Image Taken on 29 Aug 2016 at 12:33    Image of day on 18 Oct 2016

A male Ruddy Darter Dragonfly perched on a desiccated blackberry stem. We seem to have an unusually high number of this species this year.

Ref: 20161018_df3_20160829_1233_042 ruddy darter dragonfly male on blackberry stem(r+mb id@768).jpg

Image Taken on 16 Aug 2016 at 14:12    Image of day on 01 Oct 2016

A Ruddy Darter Dragonfly glowing gorgeously in the sunshine as he guards his territory

Ref: 20161001_df3_20160816_1412_123 ruddy darter dragonfly male on desiccated stem(r+mb id@768).jpg

Image Taken on 20 Aug 2012 at 15:28    Image of day on 29 Sep 2012

Ruddy Darter dragonflies tend to perch on the tips of sticks and vegetation overhanging the water's edge, flying away and returning repeatedly.

Ref: 20120929_df1_20120820_1528_051 ruddy darter dragonfly male on iris frond(r+mb id@576).jpg

Image Taken on 13 Jul 2018 at 13:58    Image of day on 04 Sep 2018

Darter Dragonflies do like to perch on items low over the water. Here a Ruddy Darter Dragonfly hunts and patrols from a turned-over Iris leaf.

Ref: 20180904_d72_20180713_1358_007 ruddy darter dragonfly male on turned over iris leaf(r+mb id@768).jpg

Image Taken on 26 Aug 2013 at 10:27    Image of day on 28 Oct 2013

The seed heads mean no more to this male Ruddy Darter dragonfly than a convenient place to perch to warm in the sunshine.

Ref: 20131028_a77_20130826_1027_003 ruddy darter dragonfly male perched on ragwort seed head (crop)(r+mb id@768).jpg

Image Taken on 10 Jul 2010 at 15:59    Image of day on 21 Aug 2010

A 'Ruddy Darter' dragonfly caught over the sedge at Duck pond who we 'invited' in for a few minutes for some photos in flight.

Ref: 20100821_da1_20100710_1559_175+1635_192_ft1 ruddy darter dragonfly mature male in flight with hop sedge (montage)(r+mb id@768).jpg

Image Taken on 18 Sep 2018 at 12:46    Image of day on 12 Nov 2018

This male Ruddy Darter Dragonfly was flying from stick tip to stick tip as he keeps a look-out for rivals and mates.

Ref: 20181112_df3_20180918_1246_176+1250_193 ruddy darter dragonfly perched on tip of sticks (montage)(r+mb id@1024).jpg

Image of day on 04 Sep 2005

This Darter Dragonfly (Ruddy Sympetrum) perched on a warm rock at one of the night photo stations and show an almost perfect shadow of it's wings.

Ref: 20050904_p20_1030429 ruddy sympetrum darter dragonfly and its shadow 2005aug28_13-32-48(r+mb id@576).jpg

Image Taken on 10 Oct 2012 at 13:18    Image of day on 13 Nov 2012

This female Southern Hawker Dragonfly individual has frequented a sunny and sheltered section of the meadow for several October days. We know her from her torn wing and tatty wing tips, but she can fly well.

Ref: 20121113_df1_20121010_1318_175+185 souther hawker dragonfly female with torn wing near dandelion flower 1+2 of 2 (montage for focus)(r+mb id@768).jpg

Image Taken on 24 Jun 2010 at 12:28    Image of day on 03 Aug 2010

Dragonflies end their 2 or 3 year life as predatory aquatic larvae by crawling up a plant stem and emerging from a pupal case (Exuvia) to expand into the flying insect. This image shows the intricacy of the case including transparent eyes and the strands which are insides of the breathing spiracles. The insect exited out of the upper back. Thanks for Rory for the gift of the Exuvia from his garden pond.
If you are interested in more detail we photographed an exit sequence of a different dragonfly species in 1999 (with far inferior equipment) which you can see at Dragonfly Emergence sequence

Ref: 20100803_d12_20100624_1228_008 southern hawker dragonfly exuvia side (@ rory morrisey) (rgb) (crop)(r+mb id@768).jpg

Image Taken on 27 Jul 2008 at 13:53    Image of day on 12 Aug 2008

Dragonflies really are incredible creatures. Unlike the one shown a few days ago this is definitely a female. Sexing can be difficult - the colours change with maturity and even with temperature and other characteristics don't appear in photos

Ref: 20080812_da1_20080727_1353_017 southern hawker dragonfly female(r+mb id@576).jpg

Image Taken on 27 Jul 2008 at 13:59    Image of day on 12 Aug 2008

Here is a head shot with an inset showing the compound eye.
Compound eyes are an array of uni-directional cells rather than lens and retina. Resolution is poor but they have huge angle of view, are lightweight, detect movement quickly, and some detect polarisation (used to navigate by skylight).
More info at Wiki Compound Eye
The streaks on the eye in the main image are Moire (artificial digital patterning) effects at the reduced resolution used in these archives.

Ref: 20080812_da1_20080727_1359_073 southern hawker dragonfly female eye detail (web sized 768)(r+mb id@768).jpg




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