Common whitetails are perching dragonflies and will often be found on low growing vegetation near a pond or other body of water. They can sometimes be found perching on the ground as well. Like all dragonflies they consume other insects by darting out quickly and capturing the insects with their legs. They will often eat their meal while on the wing, but occasionally will land on a nearby surface to eat their prey. This gives a whole new meaning to the term "fast food."
After mating, the males will stand guard over the females as they deposit their eggs in the water. The female uses her ovipositor located at the very tip of her abdomen to "tap" the surface of the water which releases eggs. The eggs will drop into the water and be all but invisible on the bottom sediment. Once the eggs hatch the tiny nymphs will begin seeking prey in the form of small aquatic insects. It will take them up to a year to complete their lifecycle and become adults. The nymphs do their part to keep other aquatic insects under control, but they aren't without their own enemies. Larger aquatic arthropods, frogs, small turtles and fish will also consume these nymphs. They are therefore an important part of the food chain.