22th April 2020
Dragons and Damsels
A memoir on the beauty of dragon- and damselflies from long term volunteer and champion of wildlife on the Eastern Moors, Roger Temple
One of Summer's pleasures is to watch dragonflies zooming about over a stretch of water.
These fascinating creatures have been on this planet for over 300 million years but in many parts of the world their numbers are decreasing.
A pair of large red damselflies
Luckily the stagnant bogs, disused reservoirs and streams of the Eastern Moors are a safe haven for many of our native species.
Over the last few years I have helped monitor our local population and my general impression is that we are doing ok. Our Moors host at least 16 different species of dragonflies, including damselflies, and this is more than a third of all the species seen throughout the UK.
So for now, while none of us can go up to the Eastern Moors, lets just marvel at the beauty of these creatures, as well as their fantastic control in the air. They can fly forwards, backwards, sideways and even upside down. Awesome!
Above: A golden ringed dragonfly
Above: An emperor dragonfly
Above: A broad bodied chaser dragonfly.