Sightings – Dragonflies

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/4/13

Observation Time: 8:30 a.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond area

Common Name: Band-winged Meadowhawk dragonfly

Scientific Name: Sympetrum semicinctum

More Information: Wikipedia

Band-winged Meadowhawk Dragonfly

Band-winged Meadowhawk Dragonfly

Band-winged Meadowhawk Dragonfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/19/10

Observation Time: 5:20 a.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond soccer field parking lot

Common Name: Blue Dasher dragonfly

Scientific Name: Pachidiplax longipennis

Comments: Female is brown with red eyes and yellow markings. Male is blue with green eyes.

More Information: Wikipedia

Female:

Blue Dasher Dragonfly

Male:

Blue Dasher Dragonfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/15/13

Observation Time: 4:15 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond area

Common Name: Blue Dasher dragonfly (female)

Scientific Name: Pachidiplax longipennis

Comments: The male has a blue abdomen, hence the name.

More Information: Wikipedia

Blue Dasher Dragonfly (female)

Blue Dasher Dragonfly (female)

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/8/13

Observation Time: 5:10 p.m.

Observation Location: near Gavins Pond Dam

Common Name: Blue Dasher dragonfly (male)

Scientific Name: Pachidiplax longipennis

More Information: http://www.cirrusimage.com/dragonfly_blue_dasher.htm

Blue Dasher Dragonfly (male)

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 8/30/10

Observation Time: 8:30 a.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond Road (bridge near soccer fields)

Common Name: Canada Darner dragonfly

Scientific Name: Aeshna canadensis

Comments: Canada darner dragonflies are very common in Massachusetts in late summer near sluggish marsh-bordered streams. They typically hang vertically at rest.

More Information: US Army Corps of Engineers: North Hartland Lake

Canada Darner Dragonfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 6/2/11

Observation Time: 2:10 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond Dam

Common Name: Common Baskettail dragonfly

Scientific Name: Epitheca cynosura

Comments: This is the most common baskettail within its range (eastern North America), hence the name.

More Information: Wikipedia

Common Baskettail Dragonfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 8/13/13

Observation Time: 1:00 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond area

Common Name: Common Green Darner dragonfly

Scientific Name: Anax junius

More Information: Idaho Museum of Natural History

Common Green Darner Dragonfly

Common Green Darner Dragonfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 6/25/11

Observation Time: 2:45 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond Dam

Common Name: Common Pondhawk dragonfly

Scientific Name: Erythemis simplicicollis

Comments: Female (males are blue)

More Information: Insects of West Virginia

Common Pondhawk Dragonfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 8/11/10

Observation Time: 8:35 a.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond Road (bridge near soccer fields)

Common Name: Common Pondhawk dragonfly (female)

Scientific Name: Erythemis simplicicollis

Comments: Pondhawk dragonflies are voracious hunters, but they are completely harmless to humans. Females are green. Males are blue. Females oviposit in flight, hovering low over the water and repeatedly dipping their abdomens into the water to release the eggs.

More Information: North American Insects and Spiders

Eastern Pondhawk Dragonfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/9/10

Observation Time: 4:50 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond

Common Name: Common Pondhawk dragonfly (young male)

Scientific Name: Erythemis simplicicollis

Comments: Males are blue. Females are bright green. Voracious hunter near vegetated ponds and slow streams, but they are completely harmless to humans.

More Information: North American Insects and Spiders

Eastern Pondhawk Dragonfly

Observer: Vin Zollo

Observation Date: 6/15/13

Observation Time: 4:13 p.m.

Observation Location: Power line cut along Moose Hill St.

Common Name: Delta-spotted Spiketail dragonfly

Scientific Name: Cordulegaster diastatops

Comments: This one is teneral (wings are shiny), meaning that it recently emerged into adult form. This dragonfly gets its name from the delta-shaped (i.e.triangular) marks along its abdomen.

More Information: iNaturalist.org

Delta-Spotted Spiketail Dragonfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 6/7/10

Observation Time: 9:05 a.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond

Common Name: Dot-tailed Whiteface dragonfly (male)

Scientific Name: Leucorrhinia intacta

Comments: Among dragonflies commonly seen at Leach Pond in Borderland State Park.

More Information: Wikipedia

Dot-Tailed Whiteface Dragonfly (Male)

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 8/17/11

Observation Time: 12:10 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond Dam

Common Name: Eastern Amberwing dragonfly (female)

Scientific Name: Perithemis tenera

Comments: The wings of the male are entirely amber, whereas the wings of the female are clear with amber blotches.

More Information: Project Noah

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/15/13

Observation Time: 3:10 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond area

Common Name: Eastern Amberwing dragonfly (male)

Scientific Name: Perithemis tenera

Comments: This red-winged dragonfly is smaller than most other dragonflies.

More Information: Odonata Central

Eastern Amberwing Dragonfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/17/10

Observation Time: 9:40 a.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond Road

Common Name: Eastern Amberwing dragonfly (male)

Scientific Name: Perithemis tenera

Comments: The wings of the male are entirely amber, whereas the wings of the female are clear with amber blotches.

More Information: Odonata Central

Eastern Amberwing Dragonfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/6/11

Observation Time: 4:30 p.m.

Observation Location: field near Gavins Pond

Common Name: Halloween Pennant dragonfly

Scientific Name: Celithemis eponina

Comments: This is one of my best wildlife photos. The late afternoon sunlight provided perfect illumination.

More Information: Wikipedia

Halloween Pennant Dragonfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 8/26/11

Observation Time: 12:30 p.m.

Observation Location: near Gavins Pond soccer field parking lot

Common Name: Halloween Pennant dragonfly

Scientific Name: Celithemis eponina

Comments: Tattered wings reflect the wear and tear of summer in this late August photo.

More Information: Wikipedia

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 5/24/11

Observation Time: 4:10 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond

Common Name: Lancet Clubtail dragonfly (male)

Scientific Name: Gomphus exilis

Comments: Male lancet clubtails have claspers at the end of the abdomen, which females lack. Lancet clubtails are common in Massachusetts near slow streams and ponds.

The name lancet comes from the dagger-shaped marking on the abdomen. The
clubtail moniker comes from the swelling of the posterior abdomen (males only).

More Information: Prince William Conservation Alliance

Lancet Clubtail Dragonfly (Male)

Lancet Clubtail Dragonfly (Male)

Lancet Clubtail Dragonfly (Male)

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 6/19/13

Observation Time: 2:05 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond Dam

Common Name: Lancet Clubtail dragonfly (male)

Scientific Name: Gomphus exilis

Comments: Once you’ve learned all the birds, you can take up the challenge of learning the dragonflies. Start by getting a book like this one: https://www.amazon.com/Dragonflies-Damselflies-Princeton-Field-Guides/dp/0691122830

More Information: Wikipedia

Lancet Clubtail Dragonfly (Male)

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 6/9/13

Observation Time: 3:10 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond area

Common Name: Painted Skimmer dragonfly

Scientific Name: Libellula semifasciata

Comments: This dragonfly is said to be uncommon, although it is not listed as such in Massachusetts.

More Information: iNaturalist

Painted Skimmer Dragonfly

Painted Skimmer Dragonfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 6/9/12

Observation Time: 3:15 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond area

Common Name: Painted Skimmer dragonfly (female)

Scientific Name: Libellula semifasciata

Comments: This dragonfly is said to be uncommon, although it is not listed as such in Massachusetts. A map showing Painted Skimmer sightings can be viewed at: https://www.inaturalist.org/taxa/104585-Libellula-semifasciata

More Information: Walter Sanford’s Photoblog

Painted Skimmer ovipositing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5_XyMkvXtfI

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/26/10

Observation Time: 6:45 a.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond Road

Common Name: Ruby Meadowhawk dragonfly

Scientific Name: Sympetrum rubicundulum

More Information: Wikipedia

Ruby Meadowhawk Dragonfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 6/2/11

Observation Time: 2:50 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond

Common Name: Slaty Skimmer dragonfly

Scientific Name: Libellula incesta

Comments: The first photo is a female. The second is a male.

Watch this video of the slaty skimmer dragonfly as it oviposits at Gavins Pond.

More Photos: Odonata.bogfoot.net

Slaty Skimmer Dragonfly

Slaty Skimmer Dragonfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 5/19/12

Observation Time: 5:40 p.m.

Observation Location: dirt road leading to Gavins Pond Dam

Common Name: Spangled skimmer dragonfly (female)

Scientific Name: Libellula cyanea

Comments: This photo is a female. Male spangled skimmers are slate blue. Hence the species name “cyanea” which refers to its cyan (blue) coloration.

Identifying dragonflies and damselflies is fun. Get a copy of A Field Guide to the Dragonflies and Damselflies of Massachusetts by Blair Nikula, Jennifer L. Loose, and Matthew R. Burne.

More Information: Dragonflies and Damselflies of NJ

Spangled Skimmer Dragonfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 6/17/13

Observation Time: 4:00 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond Dam

Common Name: Spangled Skimmer dragonfly (male)

Scientific Name: Libellula cyanea

Comments: Males of this species are blue, while females are brown. Both have striking white and black stigmas on their wings. No other dragonfly in the Northeast has white stigmas on its wings. Males are territorial.

More Information: Dragonflies and Damselflies of NJ

Spangled Skimmer Dragonfly (Male)

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/7/18

Observation Time: 12:35 p.m.

Observation Location: Moose Hill Farm (TTOR)

Common Name: Twelve-spotted Skimmer dragonfly (female)

Scientific Name: Libellula pulchella

Comments: This species of dragonfly is relatively large. Lots of different species of dragonflies live in Sharon. Can you find one that’s not already recorded on this web site?

More Information: Ecobirder

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/30/13

Observation Time: 3:35 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond Road near soccer fields

Common Name: Twelve-spotted Skimmer dragonfly (female)

Scientific Name: Libellula pulchella

Comments: This species of dragonfly is relatively large. Lots of different species of dragonflies live in Sharon. Can you find one that’s not already recorded on this web site?

More Information: Ecobirder

Twelve-spotted Skimmer (female)

Twelve-spotted Skimmer (female)

Twelve-spotted Skimmer (female)

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 5/29/10

Observation Time: 3:15 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond

Common Name: White Corporal dragonfly

Scientific Name: Libellula (Ladona) exusta

Comments: Small, most commonly perches on the ground. Adult males have a white abdomen.

More Information: New Jersey Odes

White corporal Dragonfly

Observer: Vin Zollo

Observation Date: 6/15/13

Observation Time: 3:45 p.m.

Observation Location: Moose Hill Audubon Wildlife Sanctuary

Common Name: White Corporal dragonfly

Scientific Name: Ladona exusta

Comments: Small, most commonly perches on the ground. Adult males have a white abdomen.

More Information: New Jersey Odes

White Corporal Dragonfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 5/25/11

Observation Time: 12:25 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond

Common Name: White Corporal dragonfly (female)

Scientific Name: Libellula (Ladona) exusta

Comments: The pale rusty abdomen indicates this is a young female. Older females have a drab white abdomen more similar to the males.

Found in fields and clearings near water. White corporals inhabit the northeast coastal plain into SE Canada. Fairly common in MA.

Males are territorial.

More Information: New Jersey Odes

White corporal Dragonfly (Female)

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 5/26/14

Observation Time: 12:10 p.m.

Observation Location: Borderland State Park

Common Name: White Corporal dragonfly (female)

Scientific Name: Libellula (Ladona) exusta

Comments: Dragonflies eat insects. That’s a good thing because bat populations have plummeted due to a mysterious disease called white-nose.

More Information: White corporal dragonfly

White Corporal Dragonfly (Female)

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/8/13

Observation Time: 5:40 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond area

Common Name: White-faced Meadowhawk dragonfly

Scientific Name: Sympetrum obtrusum

Comments: Males are red. Very similar to Ruby Meadowhawk and Cherry-faced Meadowhawk. This species seems to be in decline.

More Information: Nature Search

White-faced Meadowhawk Dragonfly

Two more photos taken 7/19/13 at about 5:30 where Turning Mill Brook flows under Wolomolopoag Street:

White-faced Meadowhawk Dragonfly

White-faced Meadowhawk Dragonfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 8/11/12

Observation Time: 11:30 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond Road bridge over Billings Brook

Common Name: White-faced Meadowhawk dragonfly

Scientific Name: Sympetrum obtrusum

Comments: Adult males are identifiable by a distinctive pure white face and red body. Juveniles and younger females have a yellow abdomen. Older females have olive-brown or reddish-brown abdomen.

More Information: Wikipedia

White-faced Meadowhawk Dragonfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 8/4/17

Observation Time: 1:55 p.m.

Observation Location: 4 Gavins Pond Road

Common Name: White-faced Meadowhawk dragonfly

Scientific Name: Sympetrum obtrusum

Comments: Juveniles and females have yellow abdomens. Males are red. Similar to Ruby Meadowhawk and Cherry-faced Meadowhawk, but white-faced meadowhawks have a distinctive white face.

More Information: Wikipedia

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/3/10

Observation Time: 8:05 a.m.

Observation Location: near Gavins Pond

Common Name: Widow Skimmer dragonfly

Scientific Name: Libellula luctuosa

Comments: Odonates (dragonflies) are completely harmless – they do not sting or bite. Indeed, they are beneficial in the same way spiders and other predators are beneficial – they keep the burgeoning insect population in check.

More Information: North American Insects and Spiders

Widow Skimmer Dragonfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/31/11

Observation Time: 3:45 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond Road

Common Name: Widow Skimmer dragonfly

Scientific Name: Libellula luctuosa

Comments: The widow skimmer is famous for its pruinosity – the white, waxy coating on the dragonfly’s wings and abdomen. Dragonflies have excellent eyesight. Their compound eyes have up to 30,000 facets, each of which is a separate light-sensing organ or ommatidium, arranged to give nearly a 360° field of vision.

More Information: CirrusImage

Widow Skimmer Dragonfly