Thursday 5 April 2012: Pointing dragon
I returned to the stream late this morning. The sun was poking out occasionally from the clouds and when it did, the heat was searing. The plan was to see if I could capture the dragon's tactic of pointing it's abdomen up towards the sun. I have mentioned this observation in the past.
My theory being that the dragon reduces the tendency to over heat in the ferocious sun. This theory is backed up by the fact that I have only observed this tendency on very hot days. Also, the strange action is not limited to one species, as I have observed a few different dragons performing the acrobatics. I have noticed that it is the dragons with broad abdomens, as I cannot recall seeing a green Sabina, with it's narrow abdomen perform this maneuver, this may just be a case of more observation. It does actually make sense though, the broad abdomen experiencing more overheating problems than the narrow.
The problem with capturing this maneuver is that the dragon is going to be at it's most active and very difficult to approach. I only managed to get within a few feet of today's dragon, but in my attempt to get closer I spooked her and just caught a blur of brown disappearing out of the frame. I wish I had taken more shots before moving in. So not the sharpest pin in the box, but you get the idea.
Of course this is just my theory and it would be interesting to read if any of you notice this action in the various climates around the world. If you do see the pointing action, make a note of the weather, was the sun out, was it a broad abdomen or narrow etc. You don't have to be a PhD to advance the knowledge of insectology!