A couple of weeks ago a small group of Friends were fortunate enough to witness the emergence and metamorphosis of a Broad Bodied Chaser Larva from one of the small planting ponds in front of the Centre.
One of the lucky group, Peter Hassett, has kindly sent me a fantastic set of photographs, recording the entire process. Sadly, space prevents me from publishing all of Peters pictures, but I hope the following will give a good insight into the sequence of the events and demonstrate Peter's skill in capturing the moment.
The Dragonfly starts to break free from the larva cuticle
Nearly out - the new adult pulls it's body out of, what will become, the exuvia
Now completely free of the larva case (exuvia),
the dragonfly starts to pump fluid into it's wings
The wings are almost formed and the fluid used to expand them,
will now be used to help inflate the abdomen.
The wings have flicked open and the teneral (newly emerged) dragonfly,
will soon make it's maiden flight.
The whole process has taken over three hours.
All pictures kindly supplied by and © Peter Hassett