Emperor dragonfly, Anax sp., after metamorphosis

Emperor dragonfly, Anax sp., after metamorphosis

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Credit: CLAUDE NURIDSANY & MARIE PERENNOU/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Emperor dragonfly. Emperor dragonfly, Anax imperator, resting on a plant stalk beside the larval skin it has shed as part of metamorphosis. Metamorphosis is the transformation of a creature from an immature form (larva) into an adult. A. imperator larvae (nymphs or naiads) live in ponds for 2-5 years. The nymph then spends a period of dormancy wheninternal body changes take place. The nymph then crawls out of the water, and its skin splits, allowing the adult form (imago) to emerge. The wings are pumped up with blood, & the abdomen with air, before the body dries and hardens. Dragonflies live as adults for a single summer.

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Keywords: anax, anax imperator, animal, dragonfly, emperor dragonfly, hatch, hatches, hatching, insect, insecta, invertebrate, invertebrates, metamorphos, metamorphosis, nature, type, wildlife, zoology

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