Four large wings and enormous eyes help to make this one of the most efficient hunters of all time. This was one in the UK, tho we have a similar species in Hong Kong - see below.....
These dragonflies have their own territories which it guards against intrusion, which can lead to ariel battles. I imagine this one was involved in one, as you can see the pieces torn from his wing.
They live for about a year after they emerge from their larval stage which can take one to two years.
Compare this to our HK one....
Our Emperor. Nope, not another name for our beloved chief executive in Hong Kong (that would be something unprintable), and we will refrain from political commentary, as we have been warned. This is the Pale-spotted Emperor which is quite a large-sized dragonfly.
Taking their photo is never easy as it has rapid flight and rarely perches to rest. So I took this one at nighttime in Tai Po Kau last Sunday.
from this close up crop you can see that it has actually turned its head towards me as it cleans its eyes with its leg.
See them around now in the Wetland Park patrolling above the water.