Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Here Be Dragon(flie)s

We've got a project going on around here. My oldest daughter is fascinated with dragonflies right now, and I found her this wonderful book 

which she's read a number of times now. Her process is as follows. You start with a hunt and capture


 and then temporarily restrain the dragonfly under study.

We photograph the dragonfly as best as this mama can, and she gets to work with the book, determining the particular specimen, and draws it.

And in the end, you can catalog your findings for the summer. 
In theory anyway. 

In reality, there are a few stumbling blocks. One, there are a large number of practically indistinguishable sub-species. There are black, white-faced, cherry-faced, saffron-winged, ruby, autumn, band-winged and probably many more meadowhawks. And we're two Type A go-getters who don't love to give up... Then there's the chance of little sisters freeing the subjects before their study is complete. Or the time when she manages to catch a huge darner, but neither the net, nor the camera or the book are available! 
The joy is in the journey, though, and she's not losing her enthusiasm that easily.
We think this one is a cherry-faced meadowhawk, but how sure can you be?

That one was not in our book. But she loved the shadow and decided to trace it.  


She devised a way to preserve a wing she found, using cling wrap and massive amounts of scotch tape.

 Another meadowhawk, I think.

So much time with my soon-to-be-second-grader, and learning together all the time. Glorious summertime!

the Self Sufficient HomeAcre     


  1. is proud to own one of the very first well done dragonfly-drawings of the young scientist!

    1. that'll be worth a lot of money one day :-)

  2. What a fun project! I'd like to feature this on 'Tuesdays with a Twist' this week! 'Can't wait to see what you link tomorrow! -Marci @ Stone Cottage Adventures

    1. Oh wow, thank you so much! I'll be back tomorrow for sure!