Recent wanderings

While I’ve not yet got my head back into odes this year as such, I have been out a couple of times. Below are a few of the photos from those trips and a bit of blurb. Of particular interest was seeing Eastern Least Clubtail Stylogomphus albistylus (Gomphe à styles blancs) at Mont Tremblant and the continued presence of River Bluet Enallagma anna (l’agrion à longs cerques) at St-Lazare sand pits. While at Tremblant, my overall impression was that there were not that many odes about despite seemingly good conditions.

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The Eastern Least Clubtails were distant but identifiable easily enough. To see them enter Tremblant through the St-Donat entrance and go to the Chute-aux-Rats picnic area below the falls. There is a wooden viewing platform right of the falls, the clubtails were on rocks below, also there were Dragonhunter Hagenius brevistylus (L’hagénie); Moustached Clubtail Gomphus adelphus (Gomphe jumeau) and American Emerald Cordulia shurtleffi (Cordulie de Shurtleffer.

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It was actually a birding trip but our travels also found a Delta-spotted Spiketail Cordulegaster diastatops (Cordulégastre aux yeux séparés, looking less well marked than the one in the previous post.

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I took a look around St-Lazare sand pits, searching specifically for River Bluets. The original site from 2012 is again suitable but hard to access, however, I managed to get down to the stream bed and netted one male. This has to be one of the easies bluets to id given the length of the males appendages. It was the best day I’ve had there so far with 24 species flying including many Eastern Amberwings Perithemis tenera (Périthème délicate) and a few Halloween Pennants Celithemis emponina (Célithème géante).

I’ve been trying to ‘collect’ photographs of each species in the hand for reference. I managed to add few more although some still manage to elude my clumsy net swings.

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Frosted Whiteface Leucorrhinia frigida (Leucorrhine frigide).

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Four-spotted Skimmer Libellula quadrimaculata (La Quadrimaculée).

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Calico Pennant Celithemis elisa (Célithème indienne).

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Cherry-faced Meadowhawk Sympetrum internum (Sympétrum intime)

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At Baie Brazeau I netted my first Canada Darner Aeshna canadensis (Aeschne du Canada) of the season.

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Racket-tailed Emeralds Dorocordulia libera (Cordulie écorcée) were particularly common.

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Our recent trip out west was not great for odes but I photographed this Blue Dasher well away from water and at an angle making the id a challenge.

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This Flame Skimmer posed nicely.

I mentioned last post that Painted Skimmer should be looked for, they will be over now but who knows what else may be in store. Last season Spatterdock Darner Rhionaeschna mutata aeschne des nénuphars was found near Montreal (Mont St-Bruno) and may well be spreading our way. Below is the range map. I doubt they know to stop at the line!










The following is detail borrowed from the web.

Like other blue or mosaic darners (genus Aeshna), adult spatterdock darners are large dragonflies with large eyes, a brown thorax with two blue stripes on the front and two on the side, and a long slender brown abdomen marked by two rows of sky blue spots. Unlike other species of Aeshna, the eyes of this species are bright blue, and males have peculiar-shaped, forked terminal appendages. Adult spatterdock darners average approximately 2.8 in (7.1 cm) in length. The wings are clear. Females are similar to males, but the thoracic markings are generally more dull, and the occasional female has yellowish thoracic stripes and greenish abdominal spots (Nikula et al. 2003, Dunkle 2000). The larvae are elongate, cylindrical-shaped aquatic insects that are usually patterned in drab brown and greenish colors. They climb and crawl among aquatic vegetation. The antennae are composed of seven small, slender segments. Body length is approximately 1.4 in (36 mm) at maturity (Walker 1958), which may be at 1-3 years.

Close examination of the thoracic pattern is helpful in identification, although the eye color and, for males, the shape of the terminal appendages, are conclusive.

Adults hunt along forest edges, dirt roads, and fields, often in the vicinity of the wetland where eggs are laid. Females lay their eggs, on the undersides of aquatic and emergent vegetation, especially spatterdock (Nuphar). Males chase other males and patrol for females while flying low along the wetland shoreline or over the open water, often with a leisurely erratic flight. As with other darners, spatterdock darners rest by hanging vertically on tree trunks or branches where they can be difficult to detect (Nikula et al. 2003, Dunkle 2000).

To see the full details go to

There is an excellent image here

About mdinns15

I'm a birder, I also look at odes and leps, busy guy.
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1 Response to Recent wanderings

  1. Richard Yank says:

    Hi Mark,

    Glad to see your most recent post. Cheryl and I are half way through a Russian River cruise so I have been away from Quebec odes for about a week. I too have had to impression that numbers are down this year.

    Finding birds very scarce in Russia except for some gulls and a few common species such as Jackdaw, Rook, White Wagtail etc.

    Hopefully I’ll be able to find some emeralds when I get back. Netted one male Ocellated Emerald before I left, but no sign of Brush-tipped, Kennedy’s etc.

    Best regards,


    Sent from my iPod

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