Dragonflies, Three’s a Crowd

September 5th, 2015

When dragonflies mate, the male grabs the female behind her neck with the end of his tail.  Many species stay connected like this while the female deposits her eggs. This way the male ensures that his contribution to the cause is preserved and not replaced by another male. This plan doesn’t always go as hoped, because other males will try to drive off the male throughout the process.

While I was taking video of a pair depositing eggs, they were attacked by another male. The whole encounter lasted about 1 second. The video is too fast, even slowed to 1/4 speed, but the still images extracted from the video look good.

Here is a set of images showing a pair of Green Darners (Anax Junius) with an interloper.

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