Dragonflies and damselflies can often be seen carrying a load of the parasitic larvae of water mites. This damselfly (probably a familiar bluet) had an unusually large load.
It is thought that they do not kill the damsels, but that they do drain their resources.
How do those get there exactly? It’s not like the adult dragons and damsels are in the water… ??
That’s a good question. Apparently the mites are on the aquatic larva, then move to the newly emerged adult (which must dry out before it can fly) from the shed skin. But there are a whole host of questions that could be asked about the process and I don’t know the answers to them.