Whatever happened to “Bug’s Life?” Today, we interview one of August’s insect kingdom stars, THE DRAGONFLY, and learn why it’s important to not judge a big ugly bug before you get to know them!
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Human Being (HB): Hi, Mr. —–?
Dragonfly: Dancer, Mr. Dragonfly Dancer.
HB: Hello, Mr. Dragonfly Dancer, and thank you so much for staying on the pond reed long enough to answer some questions for us today.
DD: No problem. Can you see me in the picture?
HB: No, I can’t. Shall we zoom in? (zooms in on laptop to study photo closer) No… that’s not working… everything’s blurry and more out of focus…
DD: Understandable. I mean, I have transparent wings and a brown speckled body. I blend in. I will tell you that that creek there? That’s my home. I grew up there from being a nymph. Nice picture, by the way.
HB: Thank you. And I have to say, you are quite handsome and easy to appreciate as you sit here perfectly still. As I shift here a little in my camp chair, I can see the sunlight refracting or something in your wings designs, making little rainbow patterns. But I guess you knew that your wings did that?
HB: That’s beautiful.
DD: Thank you.
HB:I’ve gotten close to dragonflies before and always admired your iridescence.
DD: Thank you.
HB: Thank you. You know, Mr. Dancer, human beings roll through Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge by the hundreds daily this time of year, but they aren’t usually excited about the bugs—
DD: —But these wild ponies, yes! I know. We’re used to it.
HB: Yes, these Chincoteague ponies are famous! And as we all know, horses, ponies, all creatures have a purpose in life. Or we could say that they are both pretty and practical.
DD: Exactly! First of all, dragonflies don’t bite! We might look big and menacing, but we enjoy flying around and doing loop-de-loops, and we eat mosquitoes!
DD: Yes! We dragonflies and damselflies EAT mosquitoes! That’s right, we’re on your side.
So yes, we know at first glance we’re not as beautiful as a monarch butterfly or as cute as the little plovers, but we’ve been eating mosquitoes since we were nymphs and larvae. It never stops. Now we chase them up here.
HB: Well, this information should really help bolster your popularity, Mr. Dancer and all dragonflies. I mean, who isn’t sick of these damn Chincoteague mosquitoes every time the winds shift on the island?
DD: Exactly! So yes, put on the bug spray, but also stop swatting at us, please! We’re on your side. Plant some Black-Eyed Susans or make a little pond in your backyard when you get home from the beach. We eat mosquitoes everywhere. Help support us AND get bit less this summer!