Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Blogging Through the Alphabet-Letter D

A Net In Time Schooling

We are on the letter D for Blogging Through the Alphabet. 

D is for Dragonfly.

I know another insect. Thanks to my daughter I think I have learned more about insects than I ever wanted to know. Regardless, they are amazing and I see an amazing Creator when I learn and see insects. Dragonflies are fascinating. What imagination he put into His creation.

If you have a child that wants to catch a dragonfly for an entomology box the morning is the best time to catch them. They are still trying to warm up and they are much slower. These fellows can be hard to capture once they get going. They need the warmth of the sun. Even on cloudy days they are easier to capture in a net. The best place to find them is by a water source. 

Dragonflies are part of the Odonata order and in the Suborder Anisoptera. There are over 3,000 known species of Dragonflies around the world. 

Dragonflies are vicious predators if you are on their food list. Luckily, we don’t have to worry about them stinging or biting when we capture them.

A dragonfly lives most of its life in the water as a nymph. They go through a incomplete metamorphous stage which basically means they don’t go through the pupal stage. They are in the nymph stage for over 5 years before they emerge as the beautiful dragonfly. Once a they emerge as a dragonfly they can live for several weeks or months.   

A dragonfly has amazing vision with two huge compound eyes, which gives the dragonfly almost 360° vision. Each compound eye contains as many as 30,000 lenses. The dragonfly uses 80% of its brain to process all this visual information. They can see a wider spectrum of colors than we can.   

Dragonflies can move each of their four wings independently. They can flap each wing up and down; they can rotate their wings forward and back on an axis. That means that they can move straight up or down, fly backwards, stop and hover, and make sharp turns at full speed or in slow motion. Scientists at Harvard University used a high-speed camera to study dragonfly flight. The studied caught them taking flight, catching its prey, and returning to a perch, all within the time span of just 1-1.5 seconds. A dragonfly can fly at a forward speed of 100 body lengths per second, or up to 30 miles per hour.

The best part is that a dragonfly can eat hundreds of those pesky mosquitoes in a day. Like I mentioned they are vicious predators and will eat lots of other insects. 

Scientist look at the quality of water to see if they have several aquatic macroinvertebrates and a dragonfly nymph is one of those indicators. They are sensitive to polluted water. In Myanmar they released dragonfly nymphs into their water sources to help control mosquitoes to control the spread of yellow fever.

That is just a few amazing facts about the beautiful dragonfly!

Other bloggers have joined in Blogging through the Alphabet.  Annette and Amanda are hosting this on their blogs. Stop by and see what they are blogging about with the letter D. #abcblogging

For my other Blogging through the Alphabet post:

C is for Crash


  1. Dragonflies are really great predator insects. My son delights in catching them. One time he caught a dragonfly that catches other dragonflies...they are HUGE insects.

  2. My daughter would of loved that.

  3. I will share this post with my kids tomorrow - we have dragonflies in our yard but those pictures in your post show the details and colors so much better than the glimpse you get as they whizz by. Thanks!

  4. I love how many blogging through the alphabet posts are mini-science lessons to share with the kids. :) Dragonflies were on my wedding invitations and one stopped into my reception to dance with us for a while. I often want to put the pods in the pond that inhibit mosquitoes, but I don't know if they'd hurt the dragonfly nymphs and we have lots of them.


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