July 15, 2009 | David F. Coppedge

Dragonflies Are Marathon Champs

Step aside, monarch butterflies: some of your fellow insects beat your distance flying wings down.  The BBC News reported on findings by a biologist in the Maldives about dragonflies that migrate 14,000 to 18,000 km from southern India to East Africa and back – including 800 km over open sea.  How these insects can navigate over open water is a mystery, but if confirmed, this feat by the dragonfly leaves the impressive Monarch migration in the dust.  The biologist counted 5 species involved in the marathon.  He figures it takes four generations of the insects to complete one circuit.

Even after centuries of scientific exploration, there are more wonders around us than we can fathom.  Let kids know they don’t have to be a Dawkins atheist to be involved in science.  This story was a discovery of interest to all nature lovers, and it owed nothing to evolutionary theory.  If we studied the technology built into these flimsy little flyers, we might learn a few things from them (e.g., 08/13/2004).

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