The other day, Reed Andariese posted some shots of this same species but a male on his blog. A number of years ago I photographed a female of that species in a meadow a short distance inside Gate 29 in North Quabbin and mentioned to him that I had never posted them but would.
While the males stay close to water, the females wander to meadows. Not sure why because they do end up back at the water to lay their eggs. Guess they need some personal space before mating. Finding them in this meadow was a real treat. There were quite a few perched high on grass stalks. I concentrated on this one.
If you look closely on the right edge of the abdomen you can see a bit of red. Those are mites that hitched a ride. Not a good sign for this female.
As you can see, although not in focus, there is a good size mass of them. Dragonflies are strong fliers so the weight probably wasn’t a problem but the mite predation most likely spelled doom for her.
Be sure to click to get a good look at those beautiful eyes!