Emperor Dragonfly in flight 08.06.2023

Sep 28, 2023

David Bishop, BSc, MIMI, AHCS

The Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust
London, Hampstead, UK

The emperor dragonfly is a very large, magnificent dragonfly that can be seen flitting around large ponds, lakes, canals and ditches from late May to September. One of the largest dragonfly species in Europe, the emperor dragonfly flies up high to look for insect-prey, such as butterflies and chaser dragonflies. It catches its prey in mid-air and may eat its catch on the wing.
Emperor Dragonfly - Scientific name: Anax Imperator. Domain: Eukaryota. Kingdom: Animalia. Phylum: Arthropoda. Class: Insecta. Order: Odonata. Suborder: Anisoptera. Family: Aeshnidae.

Another image from a personal project documenting animal behaviour in the countryside and gardens of the UK. The dragonfly can be a difficult subject to catch in flight, traveling at up to 35 mph and capable of impressive aerobatics - this image was taken against the reed bed of Anton Lake in Andover (UK) a popular habitat for dragonflies.

Technique: Nature photograph taken on a bright sunny day still necessitated a high ISO in order to obtain a high enough shutter