loading image

Dragonflies, and their more slender cousins, the damselflies, were among the first insects to evolve wings around 325 million years ago—long before dinosaurs roamed the earth. Shaped much like a helicopter, they use direct flight muscles—muscles attached directly to the wings—to pull their wings up and down. However, because of how these muscles are attached, the wings cannot fold flat over their backs. Most other insects have indirect flight muscles, which change the shape of the thorax to which the wings are attached, causing the wings to flap up and down. This means they can fold their wings flat over their backs, making it easier to crawl around on plants, wood, and soil. See “The Intriguing World of Insects” on display, pre-security, in the International Terminal. http://bit.ly/IntriguingInsects This image was posted on November 25, 2019.