Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Dancing Dropwing

A Dancing Dropwing photographed in Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka
A Dancing Dropwing photographed in Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka

The Dancing Dropwing is an uncommon dragonfly found in Sri Lanka. I came across a number of them in Anuradhapura. They differ from their more common relatives as they are slightly bigger in size. Their black and yellow coloration, long spidery legs and bicoloured pterostigma can be used to identify this species. More info after the jump.

A Dancing Dropwing photographed in Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka
A Dancing Dropwing photographed in Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka

The female of this species has tinted wings and yellow anal appendages. it's abdomen is also shorter and thicker than that of the male. The abdomen area is around 26 - 32mm in length and the wing span is also around 30-36mm in length. They can usually be found on the banks of tanks (man made lakes), ponds, paddy fields and slow flowing streams. Their range covers areas of both the dry and wet zones.

A Dancing Dropwing photographed in Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka
A Dancing Dropwing photographed in Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka

I was photographing Asian Groundlings in an abandoned paddy field on the banks of Tissa wewa (sinhalese word for a man made lake) when I saw a couple of Dancing Dropwings among them. I miss took them for the more common Green Skimmer and only captured a few images of the species. I was surprised as I was able to get within about a meter of them to capture these images. As usual I was unable to get closer to them because of the minimum focusing distance of the 100-400mm lens. I think I see a new macro lens on the horizon.

These images were captured using a Canon 7D and a 100-400mm lens.

A Dancing Dropwing photographed in Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka
A Dancing Dropwing photographed in Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka

Another post on the Green Skimmer can be found here.

* I initially made a mistake and identified this species as a Green Skimmer.Thanks to Amila Salgado for the the correction.
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