Dragons and damsels at the Palmetum

The Palmetum is one ‘campus’ of Townsville’s Botanic Gardens, the other two being Queen’s Gardens in North Ward and Anderson Park near us in Mundingburra.

The Palmetum is beside Ross River just off the main road between town and the university/hospital area. Its speciality is, obviously, palms but that means a broad variety of habitats from arid to rainforest and swamp, with a correspondingly broad range of insects and birds. Here are four of the ten or more (I haven’t yet sorted them all out) species of dragonflies and damselflies I photographed in one slow walk around the lagoon yesterday.

Graphic Flutterer, Rhyothemis graphiptera
Dragonfly: Graphic Flutterer, Rhyothemis graphiptera
Orange dragonfly Tholymis tillarga or Twister
Shy dragonfly: Twister, Tholymis tillarga, hanging amongst grass seed-heads
Blue-bodied dragonfly, Black-headed Skimmer, Crocothemis nigrifrons
Dragonfly: Black-headed Skimmer, Crocothemis nigrifrons
Orange-bodied damselfly, Ceriagrion aeruginosum, Redtail, male
Damselfly: Ceriagrion aeruginosum, Redtail (this is a male – females are greenish)

Dragons and damsels are closely related, all grouped together in Odonata, but damselflies are mostly smaller than dragonflies so the last image you see here is all the pixels I’ve got, while clicking on any of the others will get you a bigger image.

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