Dragonflies are noted to be marvels of engineering. Their ability to fly at all, the number of four wings instead of two or six, the pattern of their movements, and their ability to hover in such a way that they look completely motionless is mind boggling. They are so amazing and their abilities so phenomenal that the United States Air Force has specialists who have studied their movements and design to advance the field of aerodynamics for the Air Force. The flight of the dragonfly is so special that it has inspired engineers who dream of making robots that fly like dragonflies.
I spent a few hours today on a beautiful 70 acre farm that belongs to one of my cousins. I shot some lovely photos of a wide variety of things. As I tried to zoom in on dragonflies bobbing around one of their ponds, I was struck by their speed and maneuverability. When I got home, I did a little research.
I was surprised to find that fossilized dragonflies have been found with wingspans up to two feet! Most dragonflies in our stage of earth have wings only two to five inches across.
Smithsonian.com also provided the following information on their web site:
In their larval stage which can last up to two years, dragonflies are aquatic and eat just about anything—tadpoles, mosquitoes, fish, other insect larvae and even each other. At the end of its larval stage, the dragonfly crawls out of the water, then its exoskeleton cracks open and releases the insect’s abdomen, which had been packed in like a telescope. Its four wings come out, and they dry and harden over the next several hours to days.
Dragonflies are expert fliers. They can fly straight up and down, hover like a helicopter and even mate mid-air. If they can’t fly, they’ll starve because they only eat prey they catch while flying and they actually catch their prey with their feet.
What a remarkable creature they are! There are about 5,000 species of these marvels of engineering. In such simple creatures with such detailed design that live and move with such efficiency, it is very difficult for me to understand how anyone can think that an unintelligent universe created such a creature by chance. It makes far more sense to me to believe that a Master Engineer, creator of the universe, designed such a splendid creature with these unique capabilities and appearance who help maintain balance among other insect species in nature.
In the first chapter of the Bible, in the first book of Genesis, the Bible records, “And God said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life,” It is no stretch for me to believe, after watching the dragonflies today, that they are the result of marvelous engineering by intelligent design.