06 September 2009

Odonatas - Dragonflies and Damselflies - Eat Mosquitoes

The daily rain brought a swarm of dragonflies to eat the mosquitoes that are moving in and making large families.
My photos are of one of the ones that are swarming in our yard. I've looked at dozens of photos to identify the various types out there. The more closeup photos you look at the weirder they start to look.
There is not much we gardeners can do to prevent the arrival of mosquitoes but we can make our gardens into habitats that welcome predators of the nasty little biters.
Dave Ingram's site has wonderful photography of not only dragonflies but plants as well.
The dragonfly site has photos of 35 dragonflies to help with identification.
At Green Nature there are photos of several types of dragonflies - Patricia Michaels provides this information:
Fossil records date the dragonfly back 300 million years.

There are approximately 450 different species in the United States.

Dragonflies have a life span of anywhere from about six months to several years.
Dragonflies are known as beneficial insects because they eat so many harmful insects such as mosquitoes, gnats, ants termites and even butterflies, spiders and other dragonflies.
It's probably a Common Whitetail. Then, this photo makes me think it is a female Whitetail.

Do you have a lot of beneficial insects in your garden?

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