Mona's Field Notes-Nemesis

Posted by: Mona Halvorsen 3 years, 3 months ago

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I was sitting on my back porch the other night enjoying the cold weather and found myself thinking about how I can turn the privacy fenced backyard into my own little Big Thicket without breaking Wildwood's homeowner rules. As I was deep in thought, it dawned on me I had swatted at my arms and hands several times, and the next time I took a swat, looked at the little miscreant causing the disruption.  Mosquitoes were disregarding the cold weather to hunt and conquer, using me like a buffet with their irritating little jabs!  My first thought was "wait til it warms up and mosquito hawks tear you a new one" --for those of you who aren't familiar with the term "mosquito hawk" --it's a dragonfly, nemeses to mosquitos, and as I started learning today, a lot of other insects, including other dragonflies. 

This led my thoughts down a different path, away from my little backyard, to the incredibly diverse world of the Big Thicket. As I struggled to extract any knowledge of dragonflies from memory, I found myself compelled to learn, or at least have a vague notion of what the 54 or so species of dragonflies and damselflies look like. Of course, when I do this type of exercise, I get to share what I dig up with whoever is cruising around the Thicket of Diversity website.  I thought the best thing I could do is build a section on the website dedicated to dragonfly identification. --Damselflies will have their own section.

Photography by Michael J. Black ©

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Dr. Carl Knight 3 years, 3 months ago

Great note. It might have legs or roots. Cornell does the bird study using the backyard observers. Maybe the Big Thicket could set up a web page for critters and plants they observe in their outings in the Big Thicket. It would make them active participants and be a big help in noting the different organisms. If they had a picture then one of our researchers may be able to identify it. Thanks for thinking about this. Also the wonderful picture by Michael Black, he still is one of the best nature photographers. Besides he is a great asset to the Big Thicket. I assume 5 is the best for the rating, if not change it to 1.

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