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Common Whitetail female ovipositing

Common Whitetail female ovipositing
Photo Information
Copyright: Denis Doucet (Sawwhet) Silver Note Writer [C: 8 W: 0 N: 92] (409)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2010-07-12
Categories: Insects
Camera: Nikon D300s, Nikkor AF-S 300mm f/4 ED+Nikon TC14EII
Exposure: f/5.6, 1/1600 seconds
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2011-10-22 17:19
Viewed: 2488
Points: 6
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Common Whitetail, La lydienne
(Plathemis lydia)

Adult size: 38-44mm

Habitat: This is a common species in the Canadian Maritimes. It can be found at virtually any slowly moving or still waters that have a muddy bottom with little or no clay, including marshes, ponds, stream pools, old beaver ponds, puddles, roadside ditches and rarely, bogs.

Typical flight period: In the Canadian Maritimes, flies from late May to mid-October (May 24:Nova Scotia to October 15th:Prince Edward Island).

ID hints: Young males and females of all ages are brown with a white, interrupted zig-zag pattern on the side of the abdomen. The abdomen and a small spot at the base of the hind wing in older males becomes coated in a white or very pale blue waxy coating known as pruinosity, which is the feature which gives the species its English name.

General Nature Notes, Quotes and Anecdotes: Males often patrol and pugnaciously defend a territory that ranges in size from less than 20 m2 to over 150 m2. They chiefly defend it by raising their abdomen to interlopers while patrolling or while perched and guarding the territory. A submissive male will lower its abdomen and generally allow himself to be chased out by the territory’s “owner”, but two aggressive males may go at it for hours. Females that want to lay eggs in a particular area must mate with the male that controls that territory. After mating, the female will soon commence laying. While she is doing so, the male constantly “mate-guards” her by hovering above and behind her while she is occupied. He is on the look-out for competing males, who may actually swoop down and grab the female while she is laying and mate with her again. When this happens, the new mate will actually scoop out all the eggs she was about to lay that were fertilized by the previous male! Females lay their eggs by energetically striking the water in a rhythmic fashion, about once a second. This can actually send up splashes some 30 cm into the air! She may lay 1000 eggs in a day and can mate every few days.

About this image:
Focal length: 420 mm (300 mm f4 and 1.4X teleconverter)
ISO: 500
Shutter speed: 1/1600
f-stop: f/5.6
no flash
no tripod
manual focus

anel, marius-secan has marked this note useful
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To euroblinkie: Thank you Lou!Sawwhet 1 10-23 09:31
To anel: Thank you very much for your comments Anne!Sawwhet 1 10-23 05:25
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • anel Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 3053 W: 3 N: 8715] (40574)
  • [2011-10-23 5:15]
  • [+]

Hello Denis,
A difficult shot, not easy to take it when the dragonflies are flying up and down to oviposit. For us an unusual species, always interested to see these creatures from other corners of the world. Interesting documentary shot.
Thanks and kind regards

hello Denis
very good picture for TN to show the dragonfly in this position
great details
greeting lou

Hello Denis,
Very difficult to catch such a dragonfly in flight. It is not a easy capture. The details and clarity are very good.
Lovely natural colors.
Thanks for sharing!

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