Dragonflies are large and heavy-bodied insects. They usually hold their wings open and flat when perched. Their eyes are close together, often touching. Young dragonflies (or Nymphs) develop in water and move by what looks like jet propulsion. Dragonflies come in many sizes. The average size of a dragonfly is from 1 to 4 inches in length. Although mostly found near ponds and streams, they are very skilled fliers and can fly miles from a water source. Because they are such strong fliers; a few kinds of dragonflies even migrate. Their defenses include their excellent eyesight and flying skills which can help them to evade capture. Some are colored black and yellow, or black and red, which is the universal warning coloration and may deter some of the bird predators.Dragonflies regulate body temperature by assuming different postures, ways of holding their bodies, and selecting specific perching sites. In cool weather they create a whir with their wings and land on sun-facing perches. In hot weather they avoid overheating by sticking the abdomen almost straight up in the air to expose the least possible body surface area to the hot sun. Damselfies, frogs, and other wet land animals share the same environment. Dragonflies have sexual reproduction. The male dragonfly transfers the sperm to the base of the abdomen. The sperm is transfered over to the female and then the female lays the eggs under the water.
Dragonflies are found mostly around ponds or wetlands. Drangonlies eat mosquitoes, flies, bees, ants, rarely butterflies, and many other small insects. In the larval stage, which is spent underwater, they are preyed on by fish, frogs, toads and newts, and other water invertebrates. Among the species that catch and eat adult dragonflies are birds, spiders, frogs, and larger species than dragonflies. One of the benefits of having dragonflies live nearby is that they eat many times their weight in mosquitoes every day. Dragonflies also eat other kinds of flies and the occasional honeybee. Using a basket-like arrangement of their legs, adult dragonflies can actually catch and eat other bugs while they are flying.