Photo Friday: An emerald on the beach

Kennedy's emerald dragonfly. Image: David Marvin

Kennedy’s emerald dragonfly. Image: David Marvin

Note: This image and explanation is by David Marvin.

Kennedy’s emerald dragonflies (Somatochlora kennedyi) tend to be fairly shy dragonflies when it comes to being photographed.

This female Kennedy’s Emerald got caught in a quickly moving cold front along Lake Superior that caused it to land on the sandy beach, creating a rare occasion to photograph one without first capturing it.

Its wings and body have dew that formed when the front arrived and the fog rolled inland. Kennedy’s Emerald dragonflies are related to other members of the Striped Emeralds of the Somatochlora genus, including the endangered Hine’s Emerald (Somatochlora hineana). While dragonflies appear to be primarily an insect of the air because of their immense aerial acrobatic abilities, most of their lives are spent in or around water.

Clean water remains the key to their continued health and survival. This dragonfly was relocated to a more natural perch away from the waves to dry out and wait for the sun to warm it for its flight the next day.

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