About the Author

Jess Shillaw

Guest contributor

Jess was born in Kwazulu/Natal but grew up in Cape Town. Having an innate love for all things wild but getting to spend little time in the bush while growing up, she headed straight for the Lowveld after school. She completed a guiding ...

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on The Dragonfly Project

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Oh my! This is exciting. Thanks for this information Jess, looking forward to the update in the future. Will you perhaps be sharing the list of species that occur there? Would be great to go and look them up, learn more about them.

I completely agree with your wish, Hayley. I would be very interested as well.

Hi Hayley and Christa, I will gladly put up a list for you both once we have made one!

Interesting project!

This sounds like such a great idea, would know the species you can record in the Sands!

What a great idea to identify as many dragonflies as possible. They are such wonderful creatures.
And thanks for the absolutely stunning photos of the river and the dragonflies.
I didn’t know that they migrate. Amazing that one of them does it over such a long distance.

Fascinating Jess, great project to help monitor the health of the sand river and it’s eco system. Thanks for sharing the information about the dragonfly. Truly a remarkable creature!

Wow! Jess, this is a great project and we had no idea there were so many species of Dragonflies! We are sure that the water testing will show positive results and we will look forward to learning more!

Thank You, Michael and Terri!

HI Jess, Great Post. Thank you. All I clearly remember about my brief dabble in Dragonflies is that they are among the oldest species on the planet, and are comfortably older than dinosaurs. 350 Million years or so! Good luck with the Project – I am sure that it will make a valuable contribution to Londo’s store of natural history data.

Hi Ian, thank you! Yes there is so much more to them than meets the eye!

Nice one, that’s is a great idea. Maybe you already thought about how to account for the likely varying sampling effort across years but if not, It could be worth considering adding a simple subset of standardized sampling times so you can compare like for like across years and tease out whether any differences you notice are because of sampling effort or because of real variation in numbers e.g. say…go out for 2 hours to the same spot(s) 5 times each summer and count the total number and total number of species in the two hours.

Hi Lachlan, that is a great idea! I will give it a try! Thank you for sharing!

I love dragonflies, they are key to a healthy ecosystem and supreme hunters. They get rid of mosquitoes much more than bats, if anybody had a pond at home in the garden will see that. They are incredibly beautiful creatures, both dragonflies and damselflies, which are even more graceful and elegant. Somehow the leopards and cheetahs of insects! Every time I see one I rejoice.

Hi Francesca, I did not know that they ate so many mosquitoes! I like that a lot- the leopards and cheetahs of the sky! Thank you for sharing!

Jess what an interesting topic and await your update with anticipation. Dragon flies are incredible agile and I never new that they migrate so far. Londolozi sand river looks so perfectly clean and wish I could hear the water running over the rocks.

Had no idea about the variations–very interesting!

Wow, such a fantastic informative article Jess! I love dragonflies and whilst they’re not too visible in my home area, I watch out for them in my travels. I had no idea they are such a good specimen to indicate a clean Ecosystem in the water. When I was there last year I noticed the banded dragonflies and stopped to take a few photos as I’d never seen that type here in California. I see the scarlet, orange and blue dragonflies near water sources in California. When I’m there next year, I’ll see how many I can spot. Good luck with your project!

Hi Denise, thank you! Yes please will you have a look out when you are here next!

An extremely interesting blog Jess. Thank you so much for sharing. Enjoyed reading it and some really nice pics also.

Very cool endeavor Jess! Thank you for the fascinating information about dragonflies – definitely whetted my appetite to learn more. I hope your ámbito launch and sustain the Dragonfly Project comes to fruition, and I look forward to future dispatches.

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