Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Eastern Amberwing

I previously blogged about dragonfly sex. Eastern Amberwings are a bit different. The spotted-winged females, like the one above, often oviposit (lay their eggs) unguarded by their mates. In this case, however, at Carleton College’s Lyman Lakes, did her egg laying within a short distance of a territory holding male (lower photo). Males often establish territories around good egg laying sites. The enjoy a brief copulation (about 17 seconds) before leading his mate to the laying site.  Females may tap the water surface up to 100 times, facing different directions as they lay. Meanwhile the males may “take other males in tandem, perhaps to keep them from mating with [the] nearby female” (Paulson).

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