Wednesday, 22 July 2009

Scorpion Fly.

This was taken by an insignificant pond sited only metres from a very busy main road. I had intended to concentrate on the damselflies and dragonflies but had very little in the way of luck and besides I had terrible hay fever. Just as I was about to push off for home I came across this Scorpion Fly (Panorpa communis) and I just loved his pose which somehow reminded me of the late lamented Concorde.

The male is easily identified by the stinger like appearance of his genitalia. He attracts the female by releasing a pheromone and by offering a dead insect as a gift. If the gift is accepted the female consumes it during copulation. If it is rejected then she flies away...

As they are not particularly strong fliers I wonder if this gives the male the time to come up with a more satisfactory offering.

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