Folks, it’s been dry this fall. But this old squirrel, with his comfortable suburban life knowing which houses have a birdbath or backyard pond the humans keep filled, had no idea the local natural waterways were faring this poorly.
Yikes, that is low for our local pond.
We haven’t had a freeze–ha, far from it!–so the place was still abuzz with insects, like this male Autumn Meadowhawk.
Despite finding the pond in less than its best state, I’m happy I took the outing while our weather is balmy.
My younger squirrel blogging partners are finding bits of nature, whereas this old squirrel goes right to the source, to see the whole of nature. In other words, you don’t find pond life in the road. Sheesh.
To this old squirrel, dragonflies around the ponds are dragonflies. But for The Squirrel Nutwork, Nutmeg insisted I do a bit of looking into this huge one at the pond near us.
The big ones are called skimmers, or perchers. Turns out this one is fairly easy to identify. You count the spots. If you count the dark ones, it’s a Twelve Spot. If you count the white ones, it’s a Ten Spot.
But the white spots don’t appear until the dragonfly matures, but the black ones are, so this dragonfly more commonly goes by the name Twelve-spotted Skimmer.
Regardless of the names, dragonflies are pretty interesting in the scheme of ponds. They are carnivore eaters, snatching other insects, usually while on the wing.
But they are also food for other carnivores, begin snatched themselves while flying!
This pretty insect played with us for a while, flitting ahead of Hickory and I as we ran along the sidewalk, landing and then flying on when we got too close. I’m not sure what it is, but it’s nice to see the larger insects out for summer.