So far removed from what we call “home” during the winter months, we often wonder what natural wonders you folks that live there in Mexico year round have the good fortune to enjoy during the rainy season. Surely someone must have some photographs to share!

This week here in Cobourg, Ontario, we photographed the Ebony Jewelwing. On our 45 minute circuit walk, we happened to see these fascinating insects, and at first we thought they were black butterflies. This was a new species for us, and we were just at the right place at the right time. The lighting was perfect. We identified them as Ebony Jewelwing Damselflies.

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Damselflies are closely related to dragonflies. The easiest way to tell dragonflies and damselflies apart is to look at the wings. Dragonfly wings stick out straight from the body when it is resting (see photo below taken last December in the courtyard in La Peñita, Mexico).

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Damselfly wings usually fold back against the body.

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The male Ebony damselfly is about two inches long. They are larger than the female and have a black head, an iridescent blue body and black wings. The females have a lighter coloured brownish body and have white spots on their wings.

The Ebony Jewelwings are found wherever there are shady forest streams. After mating, the female lays eggs inside the soft stems of water plants. When the eggs hatch, the larvae eat aquatic insects. When they are fully grown, they crawl out of the water and moult, leaving their old skin behind. And the cycle of life continues.

To date, we have only seen one Monarch Butterfly in our garden in Cobourg which has lots of Purple Coneflowers and Milkweed. We did manage to photograph this Painted Lady today.

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That’s the picture from here – looking to see something from there.

by Bea Rauch

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