Nature’s Wonder

I find nature both amazing and intimidating at times. I cannot enter into a wildlife area without seeing something new. During this time of year, I tend to spot first-time blooms. The wild Iris flowers offer a beautiful site among the greenery.

Wild Iris Blooms

The hatching of a new batch of dragonflies. Every time I see dragonflies flying just above the tall weeds in the field, I imagine fairies lurking about watching me photograph the natural scenes.

Dragonflies

Two days ago, I came across a new site in the deeper part of the woods. Usually, the area is still under water this time of year. The Maple River cuts off and runs into the back creek. The warm weather caused the water to dry up faster. Certain areas are still damp and mushy. Yes, mushy is my new word of the day. In any event, the water snails had nowhere to go for water. They attempted to “climb” the trees which were still very moist from being underwater. Unfortunately, without the correct amount of water the snails died. Leaving only their shells behind on the trees. Yes, I know they are not technically called water snails. I am not certain of their correct name. I just found the site of the snails interesting and sad. They were just searching for water.

The snails still attached.
The snails still attached. I am not certain how long they will stay there. I was actually quite surprised that nothing came along and ate them. 
Snails on the trunk of the tress.
Snails on the trunk of the tree. The first time, I had every seen this type of phenomenon. 

 

I hope everyone finds nature as intriguing as I do.

Until next time, peace…..

Dragonflies: Amazing Little Creatures

I love dragonflies. I could watch and photograph these fascinating little insects for hours. I recently sat in the field and just observed their behavior. I was working on some writing; I needed inspiration for flying fairies. The dragonflies always help me with my creative needs. As I watched them hovering, flying backwards and forward, and swooping all around me, I wrote with great wonder. I decided to do a little research on these flying beauties.

Interesting Facts about Dragonflies

As I glanced through the different fact, I found these to be the most interesting.
Incredible Eyes: The dragonflies’ eyes have around 30,000 individual lenses or ommatidia which give them a rather incredible panoramic view of their surroundings. Each of those lenses provides an image. The brain of the dragonfly will use all of those individual images to make one picture. The eye allows for the entire color spectrum, UV light, and light polarization to be viewed.

Wings: The dragonfly has two sets of wings; each wing can work independently. The extra set allows the dragonfly to slow the movement of the wings down. On an average, the dragon fly will flaps the two sets of wings around 30 beats per second. The independent movement of the wings gives the dragonfly the ability to hover and fly in all directions. The dragonfly also has the ability to change directions instantly which helps if been sought by a predator. And, can reach speeds of up to 36 mph.

Food: A dragonfly eats mosquitoes and flies. I couldn’t figure out why I have seen so many dragonflies this year. Well, the wet weather created an overly abundant breeding ground for mosquitoes. The dragonflies have been enjoying a grand feast.

Species: Currently there are around 5,000 species of dragonflies. All the dragonflies are part of the order Odanata which roughly translates to “toothed one”. The dragonfly can be found almost anywhere in the world where the environment is habitable. A dragonfly cannot live in the Antarctica; the little insects love a more tropical feel. The hot and humid weather here in mid-Michigan right now must seem like paradise to them.

Ancient Creature: The dragonfly has been around for around 250 million years. The largest fossil reports the ancestor relative had a wingspan of around 2 ½ feet. Can you imagine that flying around the back field? Just amazing to consider.

The next time, you view a dragonfly consider how incredible this insect is or picture a fairy and let you imagination run wild.