I decided to intervene (against some people's rules, but not mine). The story unfolds in the pictures below. At some point a concerned visitor to the pond christened this Dragonfly 'Barry', so Barry it is, although I cannot say he was definitely male, it is hereafter referred to as 'he'.
|Emperor Dragonfly hatching. Left wings are stuck in the shell.|
|I gave him a stick to hang onto to and pull himself upright, but both wing and abdomen are still stuck|
|I carefully broke away the loose bits of shell, freeing the abdomen. The 'stuck' bits remain on the wings.|
|Very, very carefully I removed the remaining pieces, but the inflation stage was already apparently over.|
|Such a remarkable animal, just had to wait and see now if he could fly.|
|This fluid was leaking from the good wing side, not a good sign.|
|Eventually they opened, but Barry failed to take off. Will he be there in the morning?|