By John Acorn
With iridescent blues and vegetables, damselflies are essentially the most appealing flying bugs in addition to the main primitive. As individuals of the insect order Odonata they're concerning dragonflies yet are labeled in a separate suborder. those aquatic bugs are a satisfaction to the attention and a desirable creature of research. In Damselflies of Alberta, naturalist John Acorn describes the twenty-two species local to the province. Exhaustively researched, but written in an obtainable type, the author's enthusiasm for those flying neon toothpicks is compelling. greater than a box advisor, it is a passionate research into one in all nature's winged marvels of the wetlands.
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At the time, those of us who were keen on this project thought that every naturalist in the province would use these cards for the rest of human history. Predictably, though, they fell by the wayside and other sorts of databases took their place. In like fashion, I worry that much of what we do today will soon vanish into electronic limbo, disappear off the web, or exist only in files that are incompatible 48 damselflies of alberta with the latest software. That is, in part, why I like writing books.
Unlike the adults, larvae can be kept quite easily in aquariums, and fed on small live food items, the way one feeds the fussy species of tropical fishes (with brine shrimp, black worms, Daphnia, and so on—ask about these foods at specialty aquarium shops). If you give your damselfly larvae sticks or plant stems to crawl out on (as well as underwater sticks or vegetation so they can establish individual hunting territories), they may emerge as adults for you. It is important here, however, that you make sure that their maiden flight does not end in a collision with the lid of the aquarium, and a drowning death back in the water.
In part, this is why the study of damselflies from an ecological point of view is such an interesting one—nothing stays the same for long, and the damselfly “deck” is continually being reshuffled. Damselflies and Wetlands 21 A fine portrait of Francis Whitehouse at the top of his game— sportsman, banker, poet, novelist, and the father of damselfly studies in Alberta. 4 The History of Damselfly Study in Alberta My own interest in insects began with butterflies and beetles, and that’s how I became connected with the study of damselflies.