Photos by Ken Dolbear MBE and Liz Dale
Dragonflies and damselflies, with their flashes of vibrant colours, capture our imaginations through fleeting glimpses as they hover and hunt over beautiful meadows, wondrous wetlands and tranquil ponds.
All dragonflies and damselflies begin their life cycles in water, as vicious, carnivorous larvae called nymphs known to eat anything and everything! So keep a look out for these prehistoric beasts when near areas of water.
The best way to experience dragons and damsels is to get out and about in your local area, whether suburban or rural and come face-to-face with these 300 million year old creatures that once shared the planet with dinosaurs.
From juveniles to dragons
Their larval stage may last between two months and five years, depending on
the size of the species!
During the summer months nymphs will begin to emerge from the water, and upon breathing air for the first time the adult dragonfly climbs out of it’s larval skin a real wonder of nature!
As adults, dragonflies will hunt other insects such as mosquitos, midges and even smaller dragon and damselflies. They can live between a few weeks and several months depending on the species.
Want to spot more dragons for yourself?
For National Dragonfly Week we're giving away a free guide to Dragonflies & Damselflies. Download your copy at www.dorsetwildlifetrust.org.uk/free_dragonfly_and_damselfly_guide.html
If you are, or know, a child fascinated by these beautifully colourful creatures the Kingcombe Centre has an event perfect for you! Butterflies and Dragons is a Kids Club event where you spend the morning for the array of butterflies and dragonflies on offer at Kingcombe before heading inside to make your own models of these delightful flying minibeasts! Interested in this or other Kingcombe events? Click on the following link for more information www.kingcombe.org/events
You can also find out even more information on dragons and damselflies by visiting www.dorsetdragonflies.org.uk