Latest Odonata Stories

Light-colored Insects Thriving As European Climate Warms
2014-05-27 03:21:20

University of Copenhagen Butterflies and dragonflies with a lighter shade of color do better in warmer areas of Europe. This gives them a competitive advantage over the darker insects in the face of climate change. Changes in Europe's insect assemblages due to warming can already be seen for dragonflies, shows a study recently published in Nature Communications. "When studying biodiversity, we lack general rules about why certain species occur where they do. With this research we've...

Dragonflies Show Human-like Selective Attention
2012-12-21 05:48:24

[ Watch the Video: Dragonfly on the Hunt ] redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports - Your Universe Online Researchers from the University of Adelaide have uncovered the first evidence that invertebrates, like primates, have brain cells dedicated to the process of selective attention. Writing in the journal Current Biology, Dr. Steven Wiederman and associate professor David O'Carroll from the university's Centre for Neuroscience Research describe how they were able to learn that...

Dragonflies Are The Flying Aces Of The Insect World
2011-10-04 05:03:37

[ Watch the Video ] Research focuses on aerial feats such as hunting and mating in mid-air Next time you see a dragonfly, try to watch it catch its next meal on the go. Good luck! "Unless we film it in high speed, we can't see whether it caught the prey, but when it gets back to its perch, if we see it chewing, we know that it was successful," says Stacey Combes, a biomechanist at Harvard University. With support from the National Science Foundation (NSF), she and her team are...

2009-07-15 06:11:50

A biologist in the Maldives is claiming that millions of dragonflies fly thousands of miles across the sea from southern India to Africa. If this hypothesis were confirmed, this would be the first known insect migration across open water. It would also dwarf the notorious Monarch butterfly trip taken annually, as their trip is just half the distance of the dragonflies. Biologist Charles Anderson has written his research over the mass migration in the Journal of Tropical Ecology. Annually,...

2007-08-20 00:21:16

By R. Sittamparam KOTA TINGGI: Environmentalists on a river clean-up exercise at the Gunung Panti Bird Sanctuary stumbled on a rare find - the world's largest dragonfly. An environmentalist from the Malaysian Nature Society Johor branch (MNSJ) photographed the insect whose wing span at 18cm is as large as that of the common sparrow. The dragonfly is just one of the many sights that can greet visitors to the world-renowned sanctuary known as Bunker Trail. The sanctuary is due to be...

Latest Odonata Reference Libraries

Great Spreadwing, Archilestes grandis
2014-04-04 12:11:39

The great spreadwing (Archilestes grandis) is a species of damselfly that can be found in southern, western, and central areas of North America and in northern areas of South America. It prefers to reside near slow moving streams, ponds, and pools in wetlands with abundant aquatic vegetation as well as woodlands. This species is most often seen between the months of April and December, although its emergence can vary depending upon the temperature. The great spreadwing reaches an average...

Western Willow Spreadwing, Chalcolestes viridis
2014-04-04 12:03:22

The western willow spreadwing (Chalcolestes viridis), also known as the willow emerald damselfly, is a species of damselfly that can be found in central and southern areas of Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East. Its range includes areas of the Mediterranean, Italy, the islands of Corsica, Sicily, and Ibiza, and Turkey. This species prefers to reside near slow moving or still ponds, lakes, ditches, and canals with abundant vegetation and wooded areas. It is sometimes considered to hold...

Migrant Spreadwing, Lestes barbarous
2014-04-04 11:57:49

The migrant spreadwing (Lestes barbarous), also known as the southern emerald damselfly, is a species of damselfly that can be found in Asia, Europe, and North Africa. Its rage includes Barbary in North Africa and the Netherlands, Spain, Italy, Greece, India, and Mongolia. It is most often seen near still water that is brackish or stagnant. This species is similar in appearance to other members of its genus, having a metallic green color on most of its body and a tendency to hold its wings...

Emerald Spreadwing, Lestes dryas
2014-04-04 11:52:50

The emerald spreadwing (Lestes dryas), known as the Turlough spreadwing in Ireland and the scarce emerald damselfly in Britain due to its rarity, is a species of damselfly that can be found in many areas of Asia, Europe, and North America. It prefers to reside near still waters in ditches, lakes, ponds, and bogs. This species is known to tolerate extreme conditions that other damselflies and dragonflies will not live in. The emerald spreadwing is similar to other members of its genus in...

Spotted Spreadwing, Lestes congener
2014-01-20 14:52:54

The spotted spreadwing (Lestes congener) is a species of damselfly that can be found in in North America, in a range that includes Canada and the United States. It prefers to reside near temporary and permanent ponds or flooded riverbanks, as well as slow moving swamps and marshes. This species can be seen between the months of July and September. The spotted spreadwing differs in size between the sexes, with males reaching an average body length between 1.4 and 1.7 inches and females...

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Word of the Day
  • A terrible or repulsive person.
Regarding the etymology of 'humgruffin,' the OED says (rather unhelpfully) that it's a 'made-up word.' We might guess that 'hum' comes from 'humbug' or possibly 'hum' meaning 'a disagreeable smell,' while 'gruffin' could be a combination of 'gruff' and 'griffin.'