Mystery #1 Revealed

Red Saddlebags, Tramea onusta

fullClick on the photos for enlarged views.

An Odonata Saga
by Troy Mullens

Yesterday, there came a rap, rap, rap at my door,
I said, “Who is that forevermore”.

It was my neighbor with wide eyes,
He said, “Come look at the skies.”

We rushed over to look at the view,
He said, “I’ve seen something new.”

The words just flew out of my mouth,
It’s a swarm of Dragonflies, heading South!

He had watered his lawn that morning and the grass was still damp. I guess the migrating Dragonflies could sense the moisture. It looked like a mixed swarm, but I could only catch one. They were nervous, high and really moving fast. In addition to the Red Saddlebags, it looked like there were some darker Carolina Saddlebags with more extensive red/brown on the wings and some golden Wandering Gliders.

The neighbor was really relieved that his lawn was not being invaded by some serious pest. he had never seen Dragonflies migrate and was not even aware of such a phenomenon.

I also received a phone call from my brother yesterday saying that he had seen hundreds of dragonflies at a local park in Ft. Worth.

Congratulations to Amila at ‘Gallicissa‘ in Sri Lanka for the exact answer of Red Saddlebags, and kudos to Kyle at ‘As the Mind Wanders‘ in Houston TX for guessing saddlebags.

A lateral view showing the limited black on segements 8 and 9 (diagnostic).

lateral-view

Thanks to Ted C. MacRae for helping me with a photo link problem in WordPress.
Visit his great Insect Site at ‘Beetles in the Bush‘.
A professional entomologist with clear and interesting writing.

Hope you enjoyed the little excercise.

Troy

PS: leave a comment and read the comments of the previous post to see other great guesses. (not an Egyptian Goddess or a shrimp caught in a net.)

Photographs:  Canon G10, Macro mode, ISO 100

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About Troy

Retired Scientist and Naturalist. Avid Bible reader
This entry was posted in Dragonflies, insects and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

17 Responses to Mystery #1 Revealed

  1. Dewdrop says:

    I would have never guessed!

  2. I very much like your new blog, which I found through the link you left on Amila’s Bird Rescue post; well done!

    Mystery #1 is an exquisite photograph.

    I’ll be back regularly to admire.

  3. Fishing Guy says:

    Troy: I certainly would expect Amilia to get the answer. I never saw this dragonfly beflore. It is amazing.

  4. Bob says:

    Very cool, I noticed a lot of dragonflies on and around the China sea beach.

  5. I have to admit, I’ve never seen a swarm of migrating dragonflies either. I expect I’d be a little dismayed by such a sight.

    I love the eyes in that second shot — I’m not sure if that quicksilver coloring is natural or more a reflection of your finger and the clouds above, but it is quite striking. Thanks for the link, and the mystery quiz. I’ve already added you to my blogroll and will definitely be visiting regularly!

  6. John says:

    Nice to see you blogging again! The new site looks good.

  7. Marvin says:

    Great photos, Tray.

    I didn’t know dragonflies migrated. For a couple of days last week, I noticed an unusually high number of dragonflies. Now I know why. They were probably just migrating through. Thanks.

  8. Kathiesbirds says:

    Troy, your photgraphy is fantastic but IDing dragonflies appears to be even harder than birds! What wonderful names though. Whoever named them or hummingbirds must have been a poet!

  9. Gallicissa says:

    Very happy to have got it right!
    Am I a dragonfly fanatic or what!

  10. AH! A dragonfly! And to think that’s one of my favourite photo subjects and I didn’t even recognize the closeup. Very nice photos!

  11. Daryl says:

    So glad you are back and this is a fabulous blog … off to set you on the sidebar!

  12. Rural Writer says:

    I didn’t realize dragonflies swarmed either. cool post! You got some great photos.

  13. Astro-Nuts says:

    Cool pics. I love dragonflies. I have a number of dragonfly photos on my Flickr site here – http://www.flickr.com/photos/astro-nuts/. Anyway, good blog.

  14. Excellent pictures! I love dragonflies. Our yard is full of them. Saw one eat a fly in midflight the other day. Amazing creatures!

  15. kelly says:

    Wow…..gorgeous captures!

  16. jackeymein says:

    WOW!You constantly amaze me with your knowledge and your love of nature..Thanks for sharing with us..

    Jack

  17. Sally says:

    Very nice!! Sometimes while sitting outside we see them coming overhead, a few at a time, but we’ve never seen them en masse. (Or tried to photograph them.)

    In Germany, to do the impossible is “libellulum fangen” or something like that– to capture dragonflies. I tried once, and they are very scary critters!

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