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Dragonflies and Damselflies: Odonata

Physical Characteristics, Behavior And Reproduction, Dragonflies And Damselflies And People, Conservation Status, Wandering Glider (pantala Flavescens): Species AccountsGEOGRAPHIC RANGE, HABITAT, DIET

WANDERING GLIDER (Pantala flavescens): SPECIES ACCOUNTS
FOREST GIANT (Megaloprepus caerulatus): SPECIES ACCOUNTS

Dragonflies are found worldwide, except in frozen polar areas. They are especially abundant in the tropics.

The larvae are found in most standing and running freshwater habitats, where they live on the bottom, under stones, clinging to vegetation, or buried in mud or detritus (dih-TRY-tuhs), loose, tiny bits of plant and animal remains. A few species live in small air pockets inside the stems of plants, while others occupy wet burrows in the ground in forests and marshy areas. Adults live near all bodies of freshwater, where they search for food, mates, and places to lay their eggs.

Larvae are ambush predators (PREH-duh-ters), meaning that they sit and wait for a food animal to come within their reach. Adults actively hunt and capture and eat insects on the wing, using their spiny legs as a basket for scooping up mosquitoes, gnats, midges, and other small airborne insects. The larvae capture insects, worms, and even small fish and tadpoles with their lower lips.

Additional topics

Animal Life ResourceInsects and Spiders