the Precious Goddess

the Sedgeling - Nehalennia speciosa

Tiny, gracious, choosy, endangered. All characters of the Sedgeling. A very apt name as it only lives in sedge edges of bogs or acidic, nutrient-poor lakes. With its tiny wings it is not a very good flyer and it’s very good in mirroring part of the sedge it is sitting in. The French call it “La Déesse précieuse” (The Precious Goddess), probably referring to the slender body and small wings, making it look very delicate. Measuring only 25mm it’s Europe’s smallest dragonfly. And as it’s really choosy and can only live in a quite rare habitat and has a low dispersal rate, it is also one of Europe’s rarest and endangered species.

We had a very good day today, finding at least 12 individuals in one spot. Despite them not being very good flyers, they were easily scared away, so we had to be really careful while approaching them (also not to damage the fragile habitat). fortunately a few were willing to pose nicely, like this one.

Arjen Drost

Arjen is a Polar ecologist, nature photographer and full time expedition guide on expedition cruise ships in both Polar regions. With his pictures and stories he likes to show the beauty of these very fragile and threatened places.

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