Correction: thanks to Mike Powell for IDing this as a Great Blue Skimmer:
“I am almost certain that your dragonfly is a Great Blue Skimmer rather than a Blue Dasher, Blue Dashers have striped thoraxes (the “chest” area), while Great Blue Skimmers have whitish thoraxes, like the one in your images. Blue Dashers are also quite a bit smaller than Great Blue Skimmers, whose bodies seem more elongated. “
I now have two Canon 7D Mark II camera bodies and went out with them both this week to a preserve circled with old rice fields.
I spotted this Blue Dasher eating some kind of a bee/flying insect and he stuck around long enough for me to get some shots with both sets of gear. The Canon 100-400mm lens takes wonderful closeups, especially when the light is good, although I try not to go to the full 400mm as it tends to go a bit soft. This time I forgot.
As is often the case in South Carolina swamp areas, I was limited in distance and angle for safety reasons. In addition to the usual snakes and alligators to watch for this dike was riddled with ant hills. I just assume they bite and try to stay clear.
After a few shots I was able to get a bit closer with the 100mm lens while there was still some lunch remaining.
Caw Caw Interpretive Center, Ravenel, SC
June 23, 2021
After photographing the dragonfly for my post Dragonfly, Yellowish Abdomen that was perched on a branch I was surprised to spot a couple on the ground. So much for dragonflies sticking to one behavior!
This was on a short side trail off the mowed grass trail that was strewn with leaves and sticks.
The dragonfly flew to my other side, nicely perching on a dried seed head of some kind.
Fellow blogger Mike Powell (MichaelQPowell.com/) thinks my first post was of a juvenile female Great Blue Skimmer. I’ve just bought Dragonflies and Damselflies of the East and am on my way to learning more about the dragonfly and damselfly worlds; at more than 500 pages there is a lot to know.