A to Z of Wildlife: D is for… Dragonfly!

A dragonfly flaps its wings at 30 beats per second

D is for

These beautiful acrobatic insects have four wings each up to 9cm long.  Unlike other insects when they are resting, their wings stay out at the sides which is how you can spot them.

A bee flaps its wings about 300 times per second, but a dragonfly flaps its wings at only about 30 beats per second… Dragonflies have two sets of wings so they don’t have to beat them as much to fly!

There were huge dinosaur dragonflies that lived 300 million years ago! The largest fossil found had a 75cm wingspan, and currently there are dragonflies in Costa Rica that measure 30cm inches across the wings! That’s huge!

A dragonfly’s eyes have about 30,000 lenses. This means dragonflies can see all the way around, but they don’t see details very well.

Despite their attractive looks, they are ferocious predators and have a hinged jaw to catch their prey.

Ever wondered what a dragonfly looks like in slow motion? Wonder no more! Check out this great video!

Wild Challenge! Why not go pond dipping with an adult and see what you can find?

Picture from Flickr.