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In Brief

Dragonflies Are Becoming A Wildlife Attraction

Dragonfly on a plant
The dragonfly <i>Calopteryx syriaca</i>. (Image credit: <a href="">alslutsky</a>, <a href="">Shutterstock</a>)

Apparently, dragonflies are now A Thing. Or so says the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, which writes about the burgeoning popularity of the insects on their Open Spaces blog.

Dragonfly festivals are popping up around the country, the blog says, along with new field guides that help enthusiasts attracted by the dragonflies' bright colors and evocative names (such as Vivid Dancer and Sparkling Jewelwing) ID their finds. Another plus: Dragonflies are active in the daytime.

The blog points out several wildlife refuges that are known for their dragonflies, such as Bitter Lake National Wildlife Refuge in New Mexico and Patoka River National Wildlife Refuge in Indiana.

Dragonflies, and their relatives, the damselflies, belong to the order Odonata, which means "toothed ones," the blog notes.

"They don’t have teeth; don’t ask me why they’re called that," said David True, refuge ranger at Aransas National Wildlife Refuge in Texas.

For more dragonfly facts, check out the USFWS Open Spaces Blog.

Andrea Thompson
Andrea graduated from Georgia Tech with a B.S. in Earth and Atmospheric Sciences in 2004 and a Master's in the same subject in 2006. She attended the Science, Health and Environmental Reporting Program at New York University and graduated with a Master of Arts in 2006.