Subject Matter of Experiments and Observations of Water Animals in School Aquarium V (Keeping of Dragonfly Nymphs)

Lubomír Hanel


volume: 28
year: 2019
issue: 4
fulltext: PDF

online publishing date: 31/12/2019
DOI: 10.14712/25337556.2019.4.4
ISSN (Online): 2533-7556

Licence Creative Commons
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Dragonflies are an example of a hemimetabolous insect with three distinct stages: the egg, the nymph and the adult stage, or imago. The pupal stage is absent. All dragonfly nymphs are fierce and voracious predators. They kill and eat any animal of their own size that they can catch, including various water invertebrates, tadpoles and fish. Their hunting methods can vary. Some nymphs are active hunters. The use their camouflage and move slowly to be inconspicuous. Other nymphs are sedentary, spending their time buried in mud or hiding in algae mats or other vegetation. The nymphs catch their prey using highly modified lower lips known as labium. During the final nymph stage, it begins to develop adult wings, although they remain tucked inside wing pads. The closer to adulthood the nymph is, the fuller the wing pads appear. When it is finally ready, the larva crawls out of the water for its last molt. Dragonfly nymphs can easily survive in aquarium tanks. Some experiments on, and observations of, dragonfly nymphs in an aquarium, inspired by cited literature sources are presented in this contribution (e.g., prey selection, effect of space on the feeding efficiency of a dragonfly nymph, influence of temperature on mosquito larvae predation, success rate of hunting, and observation of final metamorphosis).


dragonflies, nymphs, school aquarium, keeping

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