The stewards of summer and lakes everywhere, dragonflies are not only fun to watch, they’re fascinating to learn about. These tiny insects have some mad skills and are able to do things other insects aren’t capable of. Learn more about them and test your friends’ knowledge of them too!
9 Fun Facts About Dragonflies
1. Dragonflies, unlike bees, are only able to flap their wings 30 times each second.
Unlike a bee, the average dragonfly only flaps their wings around 30 times each second. They only have 2 sets of wings so they aren’t able to beat their wings as frequently as bees. Dragonflies’ hind wings are also larger than their front wings!
2. Dragonflies are snake doctors. Or maybe not?
According to a myth the dragonfly can bring back snakes from the dead. Let’s hope that one’s not true!
3. There are over 5,000 different species of dragonflies.
Unlike most insects, there are thousands of species of dragonflies. Most of them can actually be found in remote, tropical areas.
4. The average dragonfly can fly at high speeds!
Dragonflies are some of the quickest flying insects in the universe! In fact, they can reach speeds over 30 miles (48 kilometers) an hour. However, most fly at a slower 18 mph.
5. Dragonflies have 360-degree vision.
If you look closely at a dragonfly, you will see that they have very large eyes. Because of this, they are able to see 360 degrees. Their remarkable vision helps them distinguish the movement of other animals.
6. They are used as medicine.
Traditionally in Japan and China, dragonflies are used as medicine. They are also used as food in Indonesia.
7. Dragonflies are used as symbols.
Some Native American tribes such as the Navajo, use dragonflies as symbols. For some, they represent pure water, swiftness, and activity. They are also thought to be symbols of good luck and fortune.
8. Dragonflies hold their wings perpendicular when resting.
If you’ve ever seen an airplane on the tarmac, you know how the wings are perpendicular to the ground. Dragonflies, unlike many other insects, also keep their wings perpendicular when they’re resting.
9. More dragonflies means less mosquitoes.
Since both insects are attracted to the water, it seems only natural that dragonflies would find their food source there. Mosquitoes, gnats, and flies are all considered yummy treats for dragonflies! In fact, they often catch their prey while flying in mid-air!
So, the next time you see a dragonfly in your backyard, rejoice! Not only will there be fewer mosquitoes and gnats, but you’ll be treated to a fun display of flying agility and prowess!