The other day Luisa Macmillan dropped by to let us know she had spotted a few of these dragonflies recently. Luisa is the Manager of Merri Creek Management Committee (MCMC) who are our friendly neighbours and often available for a chat or cup of tea.
After our chat, Luisa sent through these pictures of the male Red Percher Dragonfly Diplacodes bipunctata resting on a ‘lizard lounge’ (large basalt boulder) in the MCMC front garden, so that we can get our visiting school kids to keep an eye out for them. These dragonflies are also active around the CERES dam. Females are the same size and shape, though less brightly coloured, and have been seen around CERES and MCMC too.
Like all dragonflies, the young are aquatic. They prefer still or slow moving water – ponds, dams, wetlands – probably not Merri Creek which has been flowing very strongly after recent rains. The adults often fly quite a distance from their aquatic home so we’re not quite sure where these ones are from, perhaps the local CERES dam which is looking nice and full with all the recent rains and our new stormwater collection system, or maybe from some of the other ponds and wetlands in the Merri Parklands.
Dragonflies are considered beneficial to humans as they eat insects including pests such as flies and mosquitos.
It’s also the season for the glorious native Chocolate Lily (in the photo below). You can easily grow these in your home garden and they are available at the CERES Nursery.
Photos are by Brian Bainbridge, MCMC