Wednesday, April 17, 2013

An Assist

Yesterday, I spoke with one of the Buildings and Grounds crew mowing round the lake. I pleaded that they not weed-eat the grasses at water's edge and in the water. I was too late for the beach, but the fellow I spoke with agreed and instructed his colleague to cut the top of the dam only.

This morning, I saw the result: lots of Springtime Darners and Blue Corporals were emerging or had just emerged. I stopped counting the exuviae when I found more than 10 without even looking hard.

Across the lake, round the bend from the trestle bridge, I found one Corporal strung in spider silk. As I had last year, I assumed this one was dead and photographed it. Then, on a whim, I reached into the web and pulled the dragonfly out. I was dumbfounded when it moved in my hand after a moment and then struggled to flutter its wings. The front wings moved with ease, but spider silk had practically glued the back wings together.

Balancing dragonfly and camera, I managed to pick up a thin stick and with three careful efforts, I removed the silk. The Corporal climbed up onto my thumb where it sat for a minute or two, warming, grooming, and then -- suddenly -- it took off.

And so the rescues begin!

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