As students of nature with an abiding interest in and enthusiasm about dragonflies, you have undoubtedly told yourselves many times how fortunate we all are to have these wonderful insects available to enrich our professional and personal lives. We invite you to consider sharing this joy with like-minded people by joining the Worldwide Dragonfly Association. The WDA is now in its “mature age” and has grown over this time to be a vibrant and successful organization, always looking for new ways to encourage our science. Some of the advantages that membership offers are:
Biennial International Symposia give the opportunity to meet with fellow students of the Odonata and discuss our common interests in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere. Our Symposia so far have been held in the USA, Sweden, Australia, Spain, Namibia, Mexico, Japan, and Germany. The 2015 Symposium is scheduled in Argentina (details to be announced soon).
The Association’s operation is governed by a Constitution and By-Laws and a Biennial General Meeting is held during each International Symposium. At the BGM members are able to make their views known to the democratically elected Board and vote on issues brought up by the Board.
The WDA publishes the International Journal of Odonatology four times a year starting in 2011. This journal has grown from strength to strength and is now in its 12th volume, with Volume 12 (2) published in October 2009 as a special issue dedicated to the memory of Philip Corbet. Recent numbers have featured numerous color photos. Among the many attractive features of IJO for the professional or amateur odonatologist are that the articles are wide-ranging, including:
- faunistic studies, often of tropical regions that had been scarcely known;
- descriptions of new genera and species, many more yet to come;
- taxonomic studies elucidating how much we still have to learn about this very diverse and ancient group;
- interactions between dragonflies and other insects, e.g., flies as odonate parasites and flies as odonate predators;
- review articles about many features of odonate biology.
Recent articles have contrasted fliers and perchers; noted the effects of global climate change on the group; synthesized what we know of larval life histories; discussed the evolution of openwing vs closedwing perching in damselflies; and, in a 430-page special issue, assessed the global conservation status of the order.
Currently we have a very active committee exploring ways to improve the dissemination of work on Odonata, particularly ways in which we can incorporate electronic publishing into our journal. For more information please see the homepage at Taylor and Francis.
The Association’s Newsletter Agrion is published twice a year on 1 January and 1 July and is freely available on the WDA website. It contains Association news along with articles of general interest on Odonata and is replete with full colour photographs.
The International Dragonfly Fund (IDF), in cooperation with the WDA, publishes Odonatological Abstracts in January and July. All issues, beginning with the July 2000 issue, are posted on the WDA’s website in password-protected form and are available only to members.
The Association provides grants for projects (including travel grants for young scientists to attend biennial Symposia) relating to (i) conservation of dragonflies or their habitats, and (ii) odonatological research. These grants are administered by WDA’s Conservation and Research Grants Committee.
Please feel free to browse this website for further information and download a membership application form. We hope that we shall soon have the opportunity of welcoming you to the Worldwide Dragonfly Association and seeing you at our next meeting.