A Guide to the Insects of the Coal Oil Point Reserve

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Funded in part by the UCSB Pearl Chase Fund

Last updated 08/15/2005
  Insects of Coal Oil Point > Guide > Odonata - Dragon and Damselflies

Odonata - Dragonflies & Damselflies

The 'odonates' are a well known group ofexceptional aerialists. These insects have attracted much popular attention,and they are gaining on butterflies with their own 'watchers' groups.Dragonflies and damselflies are predators in both the adult and immaturestages. The immatures are little aquatic monsters, with a grotesque extensiblelower lip ('labium') that it uses to snatch mobile prey ranging from mosquitolarvae to tadpoles and small fish.

Many biologists have become interested in thecomplex courtship and mating behavior of odonates. Most are highly territorial,with males staking out good oviposition sites, and defending them against othermales. After mating males will often maintain their hold on the females toensure she fertilizes eggs with his sperm before mating again (some males canremove from females the sperm from previous mates.)

 The list of odonates for the Reserve was provided by Nick Lethaby.

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Odonate Photos
(click to enlarge)

Coenagrionidae - Damselflies

Black-fronted Forktail
Ischnura denticollis


Aeshnidaedae - Darner Dragonflies

Common Green Darner
Anax junius

Libellulidae - Skimmer Dragonflies

Varigated Meadowhawk
Sympetrum corruptum

Red Saddlebags
Tramea ornusta

Wandering Glider
Pantala flavescens

Cardinal Meadowhawk
Sympetrum illotum

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