Common Green Darner Dragonfly’s voracious appetite for Gnats, Midges, and Mosquitoes has earned Him the titles of “Mosquito Hawk” and “The Lord of June”. Often seen near ponds and slow streams, Green Darner (Anax junius) consumes large quantities of biting Flies. Even as a Nymph, Green Darner, who is a very fast swimmer, actively hunts down Mayfly and Damselfly Nymphs.
Throughout North America, people have told many tales about Green Darner. They called him “darner” because they believed that He sewed people’s eyes shut. (Green Darner’s body is shaped like a darning needle.) Parents would threaten especially naughty children with the prospect of a visit by Green Darner. Because of his voracious appetite for Horse Flies, other people called Him “horse stinger”. Some even regarded Green Darner to be a “snake doctor” because He supposedly guarded Snake’s den.
Stories about Green Darner’s aggressiveness are accurate. Patrolling for intruders, he constantly whizzes around his pond. When disturbed, He will attack bees and wasps. In fact, one Green Darner was recorded attacking a Hummingbird. His pugnacious reputation is well deserved and often admired.
Another facet of his determined character is Green Darner’s migration in the spring and fall. People have seen huge swarms (nearly one million) of Green Darners flying in a steady, constant direction to the south in the fall. The group of Green Darners that return in the spring are Green Darner’s children.
While Common Green Darner Dragonfly is a common Insect that most people can readily identify, He is also the subject of their stories. His long narrow body inspires myths of sewing. His pugnacious nature is the source for the impossible things that people say He does. Being the source of legends is something that Green Darner does well. Let Him be your guide when you are being noticed for what you do.
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