PICA Photo GalleriesDragonflies
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Dedicated to the Preservation and Restoration of the Whole of Creation: Humans - Animals - Environment
"And God saw all that He had made, and behold, it was very good.
And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day" (Genesis 1:31)

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(Photo 01)This Anax junius dragonfly came to visit and alighted upon one of our fig trees to pose for some pictures.  The Anax junius is one of about 400 North American species of dragonflies and their close cousins the damselflies.  The easiest way to distinguish between a dragonfly and a damselfly is, that when resting, the damselfly holds its wings together over its back, while thedragonfly keeps its wings extended.


(Photo 02)A close up view of the dragonfly's wing gives the appearance of a stained glass window.  Toward the lower right of this photo, we can see the second left wing through the first left wing.  To us, this is all part of the wonder and magnificence of God's creation.


(Photo 03)The transparent quality of the dragonfly's wing allows us to observe the manner in which it holds onto the branches, particularly in the right side.  We can see both fore legs extending above the head to grasp both sides of the branch.   Just in front of the first left wing, we can see a middle leg reaching out to grasp a second branch just above the "V".  The left rear leg can be seen through the first left wing reaching out to grasp the branch just below the "V".   The two-section end of the tail can be clearly seen at the bottom of the photo.


(Photo 04)In this photo, we can see the attachment of the four wings to the top of the dragonfly's back.  The dragonfly can fly better than a helicopter: it can hover, rise and descend, and change direction much more efficiently, which aids it in avoiding predatory birds and in capturing other insects.  It can also fly at speeds up to 20 miles per hour.


(Photo 05)This close-up top view of the dragonfly's head shows that the two eyes wrap around most of the head, giving these insects an excellent view of their surroundings.  Note the two antenna just in front of the large eyes.  The name, dragonfly, might cause some people to be concerned about their safety, but in reality, dragonflies are completely harmless to humans; in fact, they are quite beneficial because they eat mosquitoes, which led to another of their names, Mosquito Hawk.


(Photo 06)Note the shape and detail of the dragonfly's leg.  It has a "spiked heel" to help wedge itself in position, and a hooked "foot" with which to grasp.  The spikes along the leg are also to help hold onto something.


(Photo 07)This side view of the head of the dragonfly gives an excellent perspective of the size of its eyes in comparison with the rest of its head and body.   This large eye plays a key role in the survival of this insect.  The hair covering the dragonfly's body can also be clearly seen in this photo.


(Photo 08)Dragonflies and damselflies are very interesting insects to observe.  When it is too hot, they will perch in the shade, as this one is doing, or they will position themselves to keep the heat away from their abdomen.  They are intelligent beings in their own right, and it is unfair for us to consider ourselves to be superior.  God created them just as He created us.   God gave us dominion over the other creatures of this world, so that we might protect them; He did not say we were superior to them, only that through our abilities we were capable of ruling this world.  Let us do so with sensitivity to the feeling of others and with unconditional love and compassion.

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lamb-right lamb-left Presented here are just a few of the countless components of God's creation.  Just as we cannot have human and animal life without water and plants, neither can we have lasting peace without love and compassion.  It is our hope and prayer that this series will motivate people to live and act in a cruelty-free manner; that we would no longer hurt or destroy each other, the animals or our environment.