Monday, August 10, 2009

BumbleBee, Monarch, and Dragon Fly

Some more great pictures from Laurie C., taken from her property. If you click on the picture, it will expand to full size, with incredible detail.

Bumble Bee rolling in pollen from a Rose of Sharon flower.

A newly emerged Monarch Butterfly. Note the wrinkles in the wings, still needing to be pumped up with blood and dried.

Dragonfly laying eggs in Laurie's pond. Insects in the order Odonata (Dragonflies and Damselflies) are considered beneficial since they are predators of mosquitoes and gnats. Dragon fly nymphs (called naiads) are also predaceous and will eat mosquito larvae, as well as other aquatic life.

Weird fact I just learned: Dragonfly naiad gills are located internally, within the rectum, where bellows-like contractions of the rectal muscles cause oxygenated water to circulate in and out.

See if you can identify the species. Here is a place to start using Discover Life. Here's a place to start using Bugwood. Home pages for both sites are available from the side bar.

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