tufail 7-15-09

Dragonfly, like Frog, Butterfly, and Salamander, is one of nature’s shapeshifters. During the first two years of their life, when they are called nymphs, they live in the water. As adults they take to the air.

Any of various large insects of the order Odonata or suborder Anisoptera, having a long slender body and two pairs of narrow, net-veined wings that are usually held outstretched while the insect is at rest. Also called regionally darner,darning needle, devil’s darning needle, ear sewer, mosquito fly, mosquito hawk, needle, skeeter hawk, snake doctor,snake feeder, spindle.

The adult dragonfly emerges from the larval skin (which remains clinging to the plant stem).

The order of insects to which dragonflies belong (Odonata) is divided into two sub-orders.

Most of a dragonfly’s brain is dedicated to processing and responding to what they see. Their complex eyes provide nearly 360-degree vision. Dragonflies can hover like a helicopter. They can exchange oxygen through specially adapted anal chambers.

Males of this dragonfly defend their territories against other males. When a female shows up, the male grabs her and flies away with her to mate.The following day, the back of the larva’s thorax splits and the dragonfly begins to push itself out of the old skin.