• Wildlife Friendly Otley


Best seen near the Gallows Hill ponds, but if you’re lucky you might get one of these dragonflies dropping into your garden. They come in a confusing range of colours - yellows, oranges, browns and reds - depending on gender and age. As the name suggests, they hunt by ambushing their prey, perching on (or hovering at) a vantage point till it flies past. They then take it to a favoured perch to eat. Common Darters have an unusual way of depositing their eggs: the male and female fly in tandem in a precise way down towards the surface of the water, near which the female drops the eggs. At this time of year you might see them sat on a twig or fence sunbathing. Dragonflies used to be known as the Devil’s Darning Needles, sewing up the lips of those who swear and scold.

Photo by Pixabay

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