A Large Red Damselfly in a small shallow pond

Katy says:

My Grandpa’s pond is very small and very, very shallow. The deepest bit is only 7 cm and it’s only one square metre. Also it leaks but Grandpa tops it up with tapwater to stop it drying out (tut tut Grandpa!). The best thing is that last week I found a larva of the Large Red Damselfly in the pond.

Jeremy says:

You might be forgiven for thinking that my Dad’s little patch of water, only 2 and a half inches deep, would be of no real use for anything. And dragonfly books repeat this idea: one says ‘The minimum size of a viable pond [for dragonflies] is about 40 sq. ft (3.75 sq. m)’ and that ‘The deepest point should be a minimum of 2′ 0″ (60 cm)’.

Well, obviously they haven’t got around to telling the dragonflies yet!

What’s more amazing is that these damselflies got there under their own steam – this spring – and somehow managed to find a tiny patch of shady water hidden in a suburban garden to lay their eggs. The picture above is an adult male: for a really great picture of the larva see Robert Thompson’s photo on the DragonflyIreland website.

Where did these damselflies come from? We can only guess: another garden pond, the river half a mile away, the ditches that run alongside the railway line?

All are possibilities.

What is definite is that it might be a Large Red Damselfly but it doesn’t need a Great Big pond.


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