Southern Damselfly

The Southern Damselfly (Coenagrion mercuriale) is a medium-sized insect in the Coenagrionidae family of damselflies which are similar to dragonflies. It is also known as the Mercury Bluet.

The Southern Damselfly has a long, cylindrical, slender abdomen with ten segments. The male is bright blue with black markings. The female is less colourful. It has a mark on the second segment of its abdomen that resembles the symbol for the planet Mercury. It has forewings and hindwings which are similar in appearance and are membranous. It has compound eyes (like the eyes of house flies) and three simple eyes (ocelli) on its forehead. It has small antennae. 

The joint between its head and prothorax is flexible, which enables the damselfly to swivel its head. 

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Juvenile Firebug

The Firebug (Pyrrhocoris apterus) is a common insect in the Pyrrhocoridae family. 

It is hemimetabolous, which means that it does not undergo full metamorphosis. Instead, the life cycle includes only nymphs (juveniles) and adults. 

The juvenile Firebug does not look like its parents. It has the same shape and the same colour as its parents, but it does not yet have the same black markings. Instead, the juvenile has one black strip on the back of its head (not two), an M-shaped black mark at the top of its shell (not a triangle), and three small black dots in the middle of its shell. 

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European Leaf Mantid

The European Leaf Mantid (Mantis religiosa eichleri) is an insect known as the praying mantis in the Mantidae family. It is related to termites and cockroaches, and is not related to grasshoppers.

The European Leaf Mantid has a triangular head with two large bulging compound eyes and three small simple eyes, with a pair of antennae. It has a flexible neck, and a long thin green or brown body. It has two sets of wings and long thin legs. When it is resting, it often has an upright posture. Its fore-legs (front legs) are often folded, as if it is praying. The fore-legs are raptorial legs, because they have spikes that can grasp its prey. It has two-toed claws.

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CREATURE FEATURE: Firebug

The Firebug (Pyrrhocoris apterus) is a common insect from Europe and northwest China in the Hemiptera order and the Pyrrhocoridae family. It is related to Shield Bugs and Assassin Bugs.

The Firebug is bright red and black. It has a tear-drop shape body with red insets that have a large black dot and a small black dot. It has a small, jet black head and black legs. It has front wings (forewings) and back wings (hindwings).

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Swamp Bluet Damselfly

The Swamp Bluet (Coenagrion lyelli) is a medium-sized insect in the Coenagrionidae family of damselflies, similar to a dragonfly. It lives across the globe in most climates, near streams, pools, and lakes.

The Swamp Bluet male is bright blue with black markings. The abdomen is long and slender with ten segments. It has compound eyes (like house flies) and three simple eyes (ocelli) on its forehead. It has small antennae.

The joint between head and prothorax is flexible, which enables the damselfly to swivel its head.

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