SINOBUG

Clear-winged Forest Glory (Vestalis gracilis)

This large damselfly species has emerged as one of my favourite insects to observe and photograph. They are not associated with waterways but are found on hillsides in thick vegetation usually bordering a sunny clearing or path. They will always be in pairs or a group of distinct pairs and they inhabit the same trees and use the same perches which makes revisits possible. They congregate together in a dark corner as a group until the sun is at its warmest and then assume well-lit perches facing the open ground and from there they regularly dash out to capture small flying insects on the wing and returning to their perch to devour their meal. Initially they are very shy and flighty, but once I move amongst them for ten minutes or so they become amazingly tolerant to the point that I can reach out and touch them. Apart from their iridescence and hypnotising eyes, the most memorable feature in my mind is the crackling cellophane sound of their almost clumsy flight.

They are the closest things to fairies I can imagine…..

Pu’er, Yunnan, China

See more Chinese damselflies and dragonflies on my Flickr site HERE…..

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