Mating Wheels

I’ve learned to expect the unexpected during late summer excursions to wetlands and sluggish waters. A recent trip in search of large subjects like snapping turtles and beavers resulted in just the opposite: macro photography of insects in the order Odonata. Conspicuous dragonfly and damselfly activity caught my attention and the discovery of mating pairs in the characteristic “mating wheel” formation was a nice surprise.

Territorial fighting among breeding males is fierce. The tattered wing of this Common Pondhawk may be battle scars.

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Common Pondhawk defending its mating territory

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Mating pair of Common Pondhawk dragonflies 

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Mating pair of damselflies

Photos by NB Hunter. © All Rights Reserved.

11 thoughts on “Mating Wheels

  1. People think I’m weird (must hang with the wrong people lol). I love seeing mating insects and thus have photographed a ritual between praying mantis. The shapes copulating insects create are simply fascinatingly beautiful. The damselflies you captured are a great example of this beauty. Thanks Nick!

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