Common Odonata of Pine Lake

This is a quick overview of the odonata (damselflies and dragonflies) that you’re mostly likely see at Pine Lake in July.

Ordinarily I’d have field guides with me and we would lean over them and discuss what we’re seeing, but this pandemic changes everything! So in the interest of social distancing, I thought I’d create this blog post. You can print it to refer to in the field, refer to it on your smartphone, use it to review later, etc.

A lot of them are sexually dimorphic, so I’ll put both females and males of those here (where I have photos).  I’m listing males first just to have a consistent order, and because by the lake that’s can be what you’re more likely to see (I’ll talk about this on Saturday).

Here are some dragonflies:

1) Eastern Pondhawk (Erythemis simplicicollis)

This is an adult male:


This is either an adult female or an immature male:


2) Common Whitetail (Plathemis lydia)

This is an adult male:


Adult female:


3) Eastern Amberwing (Perithemis tenera):

Male.  Females look a lot like this, only with spots on their wings.  This dragonfly is pretty small (half dollar sized):


4) Slaty Skimmer (Libellula incesta):

This is the male:


Female.  A lot of the Libellula skimmer females look similar to this.  (In fact so similar that I’m now wondering if maybe my picture here is of a different female skimmer, so to be safe let’s say that a female Slaty looks a whole lot like this….)


5) Blue Dasher (Pachydiplax longipennis):

This is the male:


Here’s the female:


6) Widow Skimmer (Libellula luctuosa)

Here’s the male:


And the female:


7) Prince Baskettail (Epitheca princeps):

If you see a dragonfly going back and forth really fast along the edge of the lake, and not bothering to stop (ever, hence this terrible photo), that’s likely the local Baskettail:


8) Calico Pennant (Celithemis elisa):

This is the male.  Females are more yellow:


9) Black Saddlebags (Tramea lacerata)

Another one that never sits still, except for this one time:


Some damselflies, though they’re less of a sure thing:

10) Fragile Forktail (Ischnura posita):


11) Familiar Bluet (Enallagma civile):


12) Skimming Bluet (Enallagma geminatum):




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