There is a huge group of people that are fascinated with dragonflies. Want to know more about these interested insects? Here is more information about them.
“A dragonfly is an insect belonging to the order Odonata, infraorder Anisoptera. Adult dragonflies are characterized by large, multifaceted eyes, two pairs of strong, transparent wings, sometimes with colored patches, and an elongated body. Dragonflies can be mistaken for the related group, damselflies (Zygoptera), which are similar in structure, though usually lighter in build; however, the wings of most dragonflies are held flat and away from the body, while damselflies hold the wings folded at rest, along or above the abdomen. Dragonflies are agile fliers, while damselflies have a weaker, fluttery flight. Many dragonflies have brilliant iridescent or metallic colors produced by structural coloration, making them conspicuous in flight. An adult dragonfly’s compound eyes have nearly 24,000 ommatidia each.
Fossils of very large dragonfly ancestors in the Protodonata are found from 325 million years ago (Mya) in Upper Carboniferous rocks; these had wingspans up to about 750 mm (30 in). There are about 3,000 extant species. Most are tropical, with fewer species in temperate regions,” reports Wikipedia.org.
According to Smithsonian, “the fastest flying Insect is the Dragonfly which are known to travel at the speed of 35 miles an hour. Hawk Moths, which have been clocked at a speed of 33.7 miles an hour, come in second. Dragonflies can travel at 100 body-lengths per second in forward flight, and three lengths per second backwards. The dragonfly is the longest distance traveler / flyer in the world. The longest distance that this species can fly is up to 11,000 miles (almost 18,000 kilometers)”. Dragonflies are hunters and they prey on other flying insects. They use their speed and agility to help them catch their meal in midair.
Dragonflies are powerful and agile fliers, capable of migrating across the sea, moving in any direction, and changing direction suddenly. In flight, the adult dragonfly can propel itself in six directions: upward, downward, forward, backward, to left and to right.
They have four different styles of flight:
The wings are powered directly, unlike most families of insects, with the flight muscles attached to the wing bases. Dragonflies have a high power/weight ratio, and have been documented accelerating at 4 G linearly and 9 G in sharp turns while pursuing prey.
“The dragonfly, in almost every part of the world symbolizes change and change in the perspective of self-realization; and the kind of change that has its source in mental and emotional maturity and the understanding of the deeper meaning of life,” reports Dragonfly-site.com.
Dragonflies are not usually harmful to humans. Sometimes large dragonflies will try to bite, but they fail to break the skin. They can be a wonderful asset during the spring and summer months when mosquitoes are most active because a single dragonfly can consume hundreds of mosquitoes a day.
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