February 27, 2024

Large Red Damselfly (Phyrrosoma nymphula)

Although a common species, and the most likely ID if you see a red damselfly, this was the first time I’d seen any at our local pond.

Seeing two dragonflies or damselflies joined together in the above position is referred to as in tandem and contrary to popular belief isn’t actually mating. The male clasps the female in this manner, he’s at the front, both before and after the transfer of sperm, which happens when the female curves the tip of her abdomen underneath the male’s thorax. This position is called the copulation wheel and damselflies usually prefer to do it in a secluded position high in the trees or deep within bushes, so its rarely observed, whereas dragonflies are more brazen and some species will fly around openly ‘in cop‘.

On the same day I took this photo I also shot the HD video of Saturday’s One a Day species and used exactly the same camera for both – my Canon EOS 5D Mk 2. Isn’t modern technology amazing?

Here are a few other shots I took that day including yet another One a Day species in tandem.