Sunday, 7 August 2016

Insect Mini-Series - LARGE RED DAMSELFLY


The most enjoyable part of his job was done. All he had to do now was hang onto her head.


Large Red Damselfly, West Cork, ROI

It was a bit boring, but if he let her go another damselfly might catch her and turf out his sperm. So he waited.

From his leafy vantage he surveyed his realm with satisfaction.

When he had reached maturity he had searched for a good breeding ground. The vegetation beside this slow running stream offered an excellent habitat.


Yet it was hard work. There always seemed to be another male wanting his piece of prime real estate and he was constantly defending his territory. His reward for his vigilance was this female who had flown in to check him out and found him worthy.

From the moment she arrived and indicated her willingness, he grabbed her by her thorax before moving into the tandem pose while he readied his sperm. It didn’t take him long. Within a few seconds he changed position and they curled themselves into a wheel to mate. Copulation took a good deal longer - about fifteen minutes – although he didn’t mind that!


When they finished she tried to fly away but he grabbed her head and held her in the tandem position again. It was only by forcing her to stay attached to him, that he could guarantee she wouldn’t mate with rival males before she laid her eggs.

He looked down into the stream at the submerged leaves and stems; the perfect place to lay her eggs was right below them.

He wished she would get on with it.


20 comments:

  1. You tell the tale so well!
    By the way... I have never seen a red damselfly... as hard as what I've looked! I've had much fun with the blue ones... spend hours taking snaps of them flying united! ;-)

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    1. Thanks, AJ. I saw lots of reds last year in the Glengarriff Nature Reserve and nary a one this year!

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    2. I think everything is hiding this year! :(

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    3. Everything except Cabbage White Butterflies who have been happily laying their eggs on my broccoli and cabbages!

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  2. He sounds a bit like some men - once they've had their fun they haven't got the patience to let her have hers!

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    1. He he - are you speaking from personal experience, Liz?

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  3. Oh my these damselflys know to chica-boom-boom.

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    1. After I found these two locked together I was intrigued to know why, Birgit - and surprised when I discovered the answer. :)

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  4. This is lovely :) :) Have a happy week!

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  5. This is lovely :) :) Have a happy week!

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  6. Cute story to go along with the photos.

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  7. Talk about caveman techniques! :)

    Love your writing, Susan.

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    1. Thank you, Sandra. There are some amazing things going on out there in the natural world! :)

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  8. Susan I love your creativity. A hot and heavy romance from the daring damselfly world. :)

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    1. Thank you, Sue. Once I'd discovered what they were up to, the story wrote itself! :)

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  9. An illicit love affair that somehow is sweet :) my favorite post this week.

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