By William T. Hathaway


This dragonfly was temporarily dazed by ethyl acetate and turned loose soon after its picture was taken.

In the world of predators the dragonflies are among the insect champions. For an average of 3 to 4 weeks in the summertime, one dragonfly will consume thousands of mosquitoes and other small flying insects.

The dragonfly mouthparts are like a netted cage that reaches out and snags its prey while on the wing. Dragonfly wings are uniquely designed. The leading edges of the wings are thickened so that they vibrate up and down. This rapid motion causes the hind wings to flex producing a forward thrust.

Dragonflies are considered beneficial, since they do not bite; they consume myriads of mosquitoes.