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Dragonflies & Damselflies Page 28

Image Taken on 09 Sep 2009 at 17:14    Image of day on 19 Oct 2009

We saw this pair of Southern Hawker dragonflies land in this 'Wheel' configuration in a willow behind duck pond and spend 63 minutes hanging on there being blown around in the wind before finally parting in two stages.
The male is at the top using his tail clasper to hold the female behind the head. She brings her vulva opening up to the male to pick up the sperm. They were very determined - the wind was blowing them about from this position to almost horizontal.


Ref: 20091019_db1_20090909_1714_121 southern hawker dragonfly pair mating in willow behind duck pond & parting after 1 hr 19 of 36 (web crop)(r+mb id@576).jpg


Image Taken on 09 Sep 2009 at 17:39    Image of day on 19 Oct 2009

About 3 minutes before separating she has had enough and drops into 'tandem'. Some species then go on to lay eggs in this configuration, but not these.


Ref: 20091019_db1_20090909_1739_157 southern hawker dragonfly pair mating in willow behind duck pond & parting after 1 hr 25 of 36 (web crop)(r+mb id@576).jpg


Image Taken on 09 Sep 2009 at 17:44    Image of day on 19 Oct 2009

The moment of separation probably and she flew off we know not where. He flew off a few minutes later


Ref: 20091019_db1_20090909_1744_179 southern hawker dragonfly pair mating in willow behind duck pond & parting after 1 hr 33 of 36 (web crop)(r+mb id@576).jpg


Image Taken on 22 Jul 2008 at 16:26    Image of day on 06 Aug 2008

This is a Hawker dragonfly - the largest type. In the words of an old TV documentary we saw a couple of weeks ago, it will kill and eat 'anything smaller than itself'! Our experts differ on whether this is a male or female.


Ref: 20080806_da1_20080722_1626_029 southern hawker dragonfly sex unsure (web crop)(r+mb id@576).jpg


Image Taken on 22 Jul 2008 at 16:24    Image of day on 06 Aug 2008

Here is the powerful mouth and segmented eyes.


Ref: 20080806_da1_20080722_1624_011 southern hawker dragonfly sex unsure (web crop)(r+mb id@576).jpg


Image Taken on 29 Sep 2012 at 13:10    Image of day on 09 Nov 2012

The male Southern Hawker Dragonflies continue to patrol the pond in search of females. Here one is taking a rest in the sunshine on an otherwise cold day, hanging from the seed heads of one of the types of Mallow.


Ref: 20121109_df1_20120929_1310_064 southern hawker male dragonfly hanging from mallow seed head (crop)(r+mb id@768).jpg


Image Taken on 03 Jul 2020 at 12:58    Image of day on 09 Aug 2020

The first sighting here (in 30 years) of a White-legged Damselfly. This is an immature female flitting around the grass seed heads like a little delicate ghost.


Ref: 20200809_df3_20200703_1258_019 white-legged damselfly female immature (crop)(r+mb id@768).jpg


Image Taken on 24 Jul 2007 at 15:04    Image of day on 19 Aug 2007

This a mid-sized pair of dragonflies in the 'wheel' position in which they mate. The male is the red insect on the top clasping the female by the neck. They can actually fly coupled like this.


Ref: 20070819_d10_20070724_1504_045 yellow-winged darter dragonflies in wheel position(r+mb id@576).jpg


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