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.

Pondhawk23Aug17#2333E2c3x5

Common Pondhawk defending its mating territory

Pondhawks23Aug17#2329E2c5x7

Mating pair of Common Pondhawk dragonflies 

Damselflies23Aug17#2283E2c8x10

Mating pair of damselflies

Photos by NB Hunter. © All Rights Reserved.