Overview of the 2006 Dragonfly Season

March 4, 2007 at 10:17 am (Uncategorized)

I was able to find twenty-seven new species to add to my New York life list this year. Fourteen of these were new county/species records! This brings the total count of new county/species records for Chautauqua and Cattaraugus counties up to thirty. Several of this year’s records were notable. The Double-striped Bluet (Enallagma basidens) has made its first appearance in western New York. It has been found further east, and its expected expansion into our area has now been confirmed. The Midland Clubtail (Gomphus fraternus), a species of interest for the New York survey, was found with healthy populations at two locations in our river system. The Blue-tipped Dancer, a species of interest found last year, was found again in abundant numbers around the major rivers and streams. In some locations it was the most populous damselfly.
I had some personal goals for this season that included finding more spreadwings and clubtails. I was also interested in looking for some of our bog species. Finally I was hopeful that this year I would be able to locate the American Rubyspot. I did not have as much luck as I would have wanted on the spreadwing front. I was able to find two new species. One of these, the Spotted Spreadwing, was only found once in Erie County.
I did much better with the Clubtails adding five to my list for a total of seven. This was partially due to my increase in survey locations on rivers and creeks. To further increase this number next year I will be adding the Allegany River to my list of survey sites, and I will attempt to raise dragonfly nymphs to find some of the more elusive species. I know of at least one species that I was not able to net this season.

Midland Clubtail

Midland Clubtail

The bog species was also a success story for me. I was most interested in find the Ebony & Ringed Boghaunters and the Elfin Skimmer. While I did not find these, I did find the American & Rack-tailed Emerald, several whitefaces, and some Darners I was not able to net. My bog surveying was mostly done at the Allenburg Bog. I think that the darners were not breeding at the bog, but at Waterman’s Swamp located a few minutes walk away. The darners I suspect I may have seen include both the Comet Darner and the Splatterdock Darner! I will be back net year 🙂

Racket-tailed Emerald

Rack-tailed Emerald

Allenberg Bog & Waterman Swamp

Allenburg Bog & Waterman Swamp

My rubyspot dreams fell victim to the September curse of school. It seems every year I am more determined to keep surveying into September and October only to have a tough class to deal with. There is always next year though!

THE 2006 LIST!

Calopteryx maculata (Ebony Jewlwing)

Argia apicalis (Blue-fronted Dancer) <Chat>
Argia fumipennis violacea (Variable Dancer)
Argia tibialis (Blue-tipped Dancer) <Chat>
Enallagma antennatum (Rainbow Bluet) <Chat>
Enallagma basidens (Double-striped Bluet) * <Chat>
Enallagma carunculatum (Tule Bluet) <Chat>
Enallagma civile – Familiar Bluet <Chat>
Enallagma Cyathigerum – Northern Bluet * <Catt>
Enallagma ebrium (Marsh Bluet)
Enallagma geminatum (Skimming Bluet)
Enallagma hageni – Hagen’s Bluet *
Enallagma signatum (Orange Bluet) <Chat>
Enallagma traviatum (Slender Bluet) <Chat>
Enallagma vesperum – Vesper Bluet * <Chat>
Enallagma exsulans (Stream Bluet)
Ischnura posita (Fragile Forktail)
Ischnura verticalis (Eastern Forktail)
Nehalennia gracilis – Sphagnum Sprite *
Nehalennia irene (Sedge Sprite) <Chat>

Lestes congener – Spotted Spreadwing *
Lestes inaequalis (Elegant Spreadwing)
Lestes rectangularis – Slender Spreadwing * <Catt>
Lestes vigilax (Swamp Spreadwing) <Chat>

Aeshna constricta – Lance-tipped Darner * <Chat>
Anax junius – Common Green Darner
Basiaeschna janata (Springtime Darner) *

Cordulia shurtleffii – American Emerald *
Dorocordulia libera – Racket-tailed Emerald * <Catt>
Epicordulia princeps – Prince Baskettail *
Epitheca (tetragoneuria) cynosura – Common Baskettail <Chat>

Arigomphus villosipes (Unicorn Clubtail) <Chat>
Arigomphus furcifer – Lilypad Clubtail *
Gomphus fraternus – Midland Clubtail * <Chat>
Gomphus lividus (Ashy Clubtail) * <Chat>
Gomphus spicatus (Dusky Clubtail) *
Gomphus exilis – Lancet Clubtail *

Celithemis elisa (Calico Pennant) <Chat>
Celithemis eponina – Halloween Pendant * <Chat>
Erythemis simplicicollis (Eastern Pondhawk) <Chat>
Leucorrhinia frigida – Frosted Whiteface * <Catt>
Leucorrhinia glacialis – Crimson-ringed Whiteface *
Leucorrhinia hudsonica – Hudsonian Whiteface *
Leucorrhinia intacta (Dot-tailed Whiteface)
Libellula (Ladona) julia – Chalk-fronted Corporal * <Catt>
Libellula luctuosa (Widow Skimmer)
Libellula pulchella (Twelve-spotted Skimmer)
Pachydiplax longipennis (Blue Dasher)
Pantala flavescens – Wandering Glider * <Chat>
Pantala hymenaea – Spot-winged Glider *
Perithemis tenera (Eastern Amberwing)
Plathemis lydia (Common Whitetail)
Sympetrum obtrusum (White-faced Meadowhawk)
Sympetrum rubicundulum – Ruby Meadowhawk * <Chat>
Sympetrum vicinum – Yellow-legged Meadowhawk *
Tramea lacerata – Black Saddlebags * <Chat>

* – New species for 2006
<XXX> – New county/species record according to Odonata Central

Found last year, but not this year.

Amphiagrion saucium (Eastern Red Damsel) <Chat>
Chromagrion conditum (Aurora Damsel) <Chat>

Stylogomphus albistylus (Least Clubtail) <Chat>



  1. mon@rch said,

    Such an amazing list of Dragonflies that you saw in 2006!! I really need to get out and have you teach me more about Dragonflies! I love the bog photo!

  2. Linda O'Brien said,

    I agree with Tom – very impressive list and a great picture of the bog! How did you do that? Always good to read a new blog. LOB

  3. furiousball said,

    I know nothing about entomology, but that list is darned impressive. Great shots of the dragonflies. My son loves all bugs, but he always calls dragonflies his buddies because they always seem to follow him around. (He’s outside a lot when the weather is nice)

  4. Jeremy Martin said,

    Thanks Tom, you know I’m always ready for a nature outing!

    Linda, I try to spend my lunch hour outside on every nice day. I also like to take weekend trips with my family to our nature hot-spots. I did 80 surveys last summer. The bog picture was taken from a plane that my little brother was piloting. I went in with a few friends and it ended up costing me $40 for an hour. I just gave him the GPS coordinates. I think I will do the same this summer.

    furiousball, I my son will turn two this summer, and I can’t wait to see how he reacts to the dragonflies. I think he will be my #1 nature buddy (at least until he becomes a teenager!). It is great to see kids who enjoy nature instead of being on a computer or in front of a TV all day.

  5. Ed Lam said,

    Great list and good luck this year. 80 surveys is a lot of good work. I live downstate but my work and family (I have a boy who’ll turn 2 this year as well) has kept me from helping in the NY ode survey.

    Best wishes,
    Ed Lam
    Eastchester, NY

  6. Jeremy Martin said,

    Thanks for the nice words Ed. I have worn your book out over the last year. Thanks for making a great resource. For those that don’t know, Ed’s book “Damselflies of the Northeast” is about the best field guide I have found for this region.

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