“While inspecting a local pond in February 2017, I was greeted by a charming and handsome Sultan dragonfly (Camacinia gigantea, family Libellulidae). He was perched on the stiff and straight inflorescence of an aroid (below).

Sultan Dragonfly perched
Sultan Dragonfly perched

“Periodically, he would take off from this favourite perch and conduct brief flights over his territory, or snatch a meal from the sky. Sometimes, he would return with an insect in his mouth (below).

Sultan Dragonfly feeding
Sultan Dragonfly feeding

“A video clip of this regal dragonfly chomping and chewing his prey may be previewed here:

“Then, just when I least expected, this Sultan darted off with a burst of energy and urgency. Next, I heard the clash of wings in mid-air and the male was swiftly back to his perch, with a female in tow! The pair had adopted the mating wheel position (below) and remained in union for just under a minute.

Sultan Dragonfly mating
Sultan Dragonfly mating

“A video clip of their intense, intimate moment may be previewed here:

“Not long after my observations had reached its climax, the female then sought a secluded corner of the pond to lay her fertilised eggs.

“A brief video clip of this female ovipositing may be previewed here:”

Dr. Leong Tzi Ming
5th April 2017

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Dr Wee played a significant role as a green advocate in Singapore through his extensive involvement in various organizations and committees: as Secretary and Chairman for the Malayan Nature Society (Singapore Branch), and with the Nature Society (Singapore) as founding President (1978-1995). He has also served in the Nature Reserve Board (1987-1989), Nature Reserves Committee (1990-1996), National Council on the Environment/Singapore Environment Council (1992-1996), Work-Group on Nature Conservation (1992) and Inter-Varsity Council on the Environment (1995-1997). He is Patron of the Singapore Gardening Society and was appointed Honorary Museum Associate of the Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum (LKCNHM) in 2012. In 2005, Dr Wee started the Bird Ecology Study Group. With more than 6,000 entries, the website has become a valuable resource consulted by students, birdwatchers and researchers locally and internationally. The views and opinions expressed in this article are his own, and do not represent those of LKCNHM, the National University of Singapore or its affiliated institutions.

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