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Damsel flies

I was delighted today to discover that damsel flies have been breeding in my little wildlife pond.  I found several of these "creatures" (right) clinging to the upper edge of the pond liner which the drought has exposed.  On closer inspection, they turned out to be empty skins, then I noticed this poor creature, still alive but grievously injured.  I guessed it had been attacked by a bird.  Then I found another, with wings half-expanded.  When I came back with the camera, it had gone.  "I didn't think it would be ready to fly so quickly," I thought, then spotted an insouciant herring gull on the roof....

There were also a lot of smaller insects, flying about just above the surface and resting on it or on the lily leaves.  I couldn't take a photo, they were too small and too fast.  Less than 1cm length and wingspan, iridescent blue-green.  I've never seen them before, any ideas? 

Posts

  • Blue OnionBlue Onion Posts: 2,428
    edited June 2018
    I can't imagine a gull going after small insects., but maybe.  
    Utah, USA.
  • Ladybird4Ladybird4 Third rock from the sunPosts: 29,352
    I think that creature is actually a dragonfly and not a damselfly josusa. The small blue fly you mentioned is possibly just one of the wide family of flies and it would have been landing on the lily pads to get a drink.
    Cacoethes: An irresistible urge to do something inadvisable
  • ShepsSheps Posts: 827
    Ladybird is correct, it is a Dragonfly and going by the eye colour I'd say it's a Common Darter.
  • josusa47josusa47 Posts: 3,376
    Here be dragons!   Thanks for the info, I didn't think they were big enough for dragon flies!  Onion, I've yet to find anything our gulls won't eat.  They'll steal chips off your fork and ice cream out of your cornet.  Though come to think of it, the injured dragonfly wasn't taken, so maybe the other one did fly off safely.  Those little flies were too numerous and too attached to the pond to be random visitors, Ladybird, so I'll look them up next time I'm in the library.
  • Ladybird4Ladybird4 Third rock from the sunPosts: 29,352
    PLease let us know if you find them josusa. It was their minute size that ruled out quite a few members of that huge family.
    Cacoethes: An irresistible urge to do something inadvisable
  • josusa47josusa47 Posts: 3,376
    edited June 2018
    It's no use, I can't get a proper look at them, they're just too nifty to be caught, and they retreat to the other side of the pond when I try to get a closer look.  I've looked at a few websites but can't see anything like them.  Maybe I've discovered a new species.
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