California's Year 2017

Dragonfly Reports

 

 

Sightings are listed in order from MOST recently to LEAST recently seen! 
Please send your sightings, with date, county and location as displayed below to Kathy Biggs and/or the CalOdes Yahoo! Dragonfly discussion group 
date (month/day/year) 
County (name of county where seen) 
your name 
place, etc. 
species common name &/or scientific name - #s & other data, comments, etc.  
species common name &/or scientific name - #s & other data, comments, etc. 
See examples below (after dates start)
THANK YOU

 

Note: A Facebook Western Odonata group is a wonderful place to get help with IDs, etc. Check it out - https://www.facebook.com/groups/WesternOdonata/ 
 
Key:
Species will be posted using either the Common Name or the Scientific Name, whichever the sender uses (inc. using both), 
but all first and last sightings of the year, county records, and new flight data will be posted using both names. 
To contact the person making the sighting, email Kathy Biggs.
COUNTY RECORDS are underlined and in red text  (any new, but prior to 2016 records are listed at the bottom of the page)
           OC= Odonata Central
* = first/last sighting of species of year in CA 
** = new flight data for species in CA
# = probably a migratory event
MO = many observers (usually means a field trip full of observers)
 
As of the most recent date below,

49 species (out of the 114 species known to have occurred in California) have been reported to this site as flying in California in the 2017 season.

1 new California county records have been reported/discovered/upgraded this year. (this # includes upgrades of previous ‘sighting only’ & photo records)

In 2015, new county records were found by accessing specimens in museum collections or late reports. All were entered at Odonata Central by “Calif Records”.

`Sighting only' records need further documentation, but please report them so we can try to get substantiation.

 

County records should be substantiated with specimen (preferable) or photo and notes. [note: not all species are identifiable by photos]

Report new county records and early/late flight dates to Kathy Biggs bigsnest at sonic.net & Odonata Central (http://odonatacentral.bfl.utexas.edu/records/US_new_records.asp) for verification

EVERYONE is encouraged to record flight data for their home &/or favorite county and to upload such files to CalOdes: https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/CalOdes/files &/or Odonata Central.

 

May
 
 
May 21, 2017
Siskiyou County
Kathy & Dave Biggs
Mt. Shasta Forest, McCloud
Twelve-spotted Skimmer – 2 males inc. one pair in wheel
 
May 20, 2017
Colusa County
Kathy & Dave Biggs
Bear Creek, 1:30-2:00, 89F, breezy, lots of water!
American Rubyspot – 1 m, 1 f
California Dancer – 1 m photographed
Tule Bluet
No/Bo Bluets
California Darner
Blue-eyed Darner – more abundant the the CA Darners (no Anax seen at all)
Pacific Clubtail – 1 male photographed
*Western River Cruiser Macromia magnifica – 1-3 males seen, photographed. No exuvia under the bridge though
Flame Skimmer – dozens, but probably less than a 100
…….
Santa Barbara County
Hugh Ranson 
Seaside Nursery in Carpinteria
Rambur's Forktail – a male. This is now the fourth year these beasts have appeared (emerged) at the tiny pond there. Also present were three 
Pacific Forktails, a 
Blue Dasher, and a 
Flame Skimmer
 
May 18, 2017
Colusa County
Greg Kareofellas
Little Stony Creek 
*Grappletail Octogomphus specularis – 1 male photographed
…….
Sonoma County
Kathy & Dave Biggs
Their Sebastopol backyard
Cardinal Meadowhawks – males guarding, females ovipositing 
Flame Skimmers - males guarding, a female ovipositing 
Pacific Spiketail Cordulegaster dorsalis 1 female hunting in the backyard
Blue Dasher – 2 immature males
Pacific Forktails – MANY
Western Forktailsome
Vivid Dancer – in backyard, not at pond
No/Bo Bluet – 1 male
Black Spreadwing – 1 male
Common Whitetail – 1 male flyby late in the afternoon
Alan Wight
Keysight Technologies, Santa Rosa
Pacific Spiketail - my first of the year.  One of my favorites!  It was a male.
 
May 17, 2017
San Mateo County
Jennifer Rycenga
Park where Bay Meadows Track used to be
Black Spreadwing Lestes stultus first one reported in county in decades
 
May 14, 2017
Riverside County
Peter Siminski
Dos Palmas Preserve; Dos Palmas oasis, Felger oasis, Agua Farms and fish ponds; Elev. -100’ to -240’; 7:00-12:40, 66-90F, altostratus clearing by end of walk, light air. 4.25 miles.
Paiute Dancer, Argia Alberta 1
Powdered Dancer, A. moesta 1
Blue-ringed Dancer, A. sedula 2
Rambur’s Forktail, Ischnura ramburii 2
Variegated Meadowhawk, Sympetrum corruptum 1
Western Pondhawk, Erythemis collocata >20
Blue Dasher, Pachydiplax longipennis >40
Comanche Skimmer, Libellula comanche 10
Bleached Skimmer, L. composita 2
Widow Skimmer, L. luctuosa 1
Flame Skimmer, L. saturata 8
Marl Pennant, Macrodiplax balteata 15
Black Saddlebags, Tramea lacerata 2
…….
Siskiyou County
Dave Payne
Shasta River @ Hudson Rd. The river remains high and chilly.
*River Jewelwing Calopteryx aequabilis 1 female sunning in the grasses along.
Pacific Clubtails, only a handful 
bluets, a few teneral 
…….
Sonoma County
Kathy & Dave Biggs
Their Sebastopol backyard
Cardinal Meadowhawks – males guarding, females ovipositing and 2 emerging
Flame Skimmers - males guarding, a female ovipositing and 1emerging
*Pacific Spiketail Cordulegaster dorsalis 1 female hunting in the backyard
David Hoffman
Willow Creek
American Rubyspot Hetaerina americana – 1 male photographed
 
May 12, 2017
Inyo County
Ron & Barbara Oriti
Blackrock Wetlands  
Eight-spotted Skimmer – 1
 
May 11, 2017
Mono County
Ron & Barbara Oriti

Fish Slough,      

Flame Skimmers – a few

 
May 8, 2017
Sacramento County
Dave Johnson
t Sailor Bar (with photos) on the American River Parkway
*Twelve-spotted Skimmer Libellula pulchella - a male
 
May 6, 2017
Solano County
Rita LaRoy
Rockville Hills Regional Park
*Red-veined Meadowhawk Sympetrum madidum
 
May 5, 2017
San Bernardion County

Matthew Grube

Redlands at San Timoteo
*Desert Firetail Telebasis salva – is it on the year list yet?  I had one today.  Pretty sure all the others I saw have been recorded this year, but the highlight for me was a
Giant Darner
 
May 4, 2017
Sonoma County

Alan Wight

Nagasawa Park in Santa Rosa, Sonoma County, I saw the following:

Pacific Forktail – several

Bluet sp. – several

*Black Spreadwing Lestes stultus2+

Beaverpond Baskettail – 3

Pacific Clubtail – 1, first of year

California Darner – 1

Darner sp. – 1

Flame Skimmer – 2

Western Pondhawk 3

Blue Dasher – 4+, first of year

Common Whitetail – 3, first of year

Eight-spotted Skimmer – 4+

Striped Meadowhawk - 1

Cardinal Meadowhawk – 2

 

May 1, 2017
Sonoma County
Dave & Kathy Biggs
Graton in a yard with no pond, but several vineyard ponds nearby

Vivid Dancer - 1 male

Flame Skimmer - 1 male

8-spotted Skimmer - 1 male

CA Darners seen nearby

Our Sebastopol Pond

Cardinal Meadowlarks in skirmishes with

2 Flame Skimmer males (we think at least one emerged from the pond while we were gone)

Pacific Forktails

 
April
 
April 30, 2017

San Bernardino County

Doug Karalun

Made my first trip of the year to the confluence of the Mojave River and Deep Creek.  Lots of water this year.

Familiar Bluet 

Western Forktail

Pacific Forktail

*California Dancer Argia agrioides

Vivid Dancer

Giant Darner

Blue-eyed Darner

*Gray Sanddragon Progomphus borealis

Flame Skimmer

Red Rock Skimmer

Variegated Meadowhawk

Hesperia Lakes was full of anglers but a few odes were lurking on the mossy ditch that drains the Lake.

Tule Bluet

Black-fronted Forktail

*Aztec Dancer Argia nahuana

Variegated Meadowhawk

 
April 29, 2017

Orange County

Rich Schilk

Visited Ralph B. Clark Regional Park with my daughter Arabella yesterday afternoon and got a few odes, the best of which was a Giant Darner. Temperature was in the high 80s - low 90s.

Familiar Bluet, Enallagma civile  OC# 462323
Common Green Darner, Anax junius
Giant Darner, Anax walsinghami  OC# 462322
Flame Skimmer, Libellula saturata
Blue Dasher, Pachydiplax longipennis
Black Saddlebags, Tramea lacerata
Red Saddlebags, Tramea onusta

 

April 27/28 2017

Siskiyou County

Dave & Kathy Biggs, Celise Sharpe & Dennis Ball

The Sharpe –Ball backyard pond in Big Springs – 28th

CA Darner – one emerged during the morning (below freezing the night before)

Pacific Forktails – several

Dave & Kathy Biggs

McCloud River walk, between Lower and Middle Falls – 27th

Variegated Meadowhawk - 1

 

April 25 2017
Sonoma County

Alan Wight

Keysight Technologies site on Fountaingrove Parkway in Santa Rosa

Vivid Dancer – 5+

Darner sp. – 1

Variegated Meadowhawk – 1

*Striped Meadowhawk Sympetrum pallipes – 1http://www.sonic.net/~shwand/odonata/temp/striped_meadowhawk_8231.jpg

 
April 23, 2017
San Benito County
Steve Rovell
Pinnacles NP
Vivid Dancers 4
Variegated Meadowhawk 1
…….
Riverside County
Peter Siminski
Dos Palmas Preserve; Dos Palmas oasis, Felger oasis, Agua Farms and fish ponds; Elev. -100’ to -240’; 6:45-11:35, 70-97F, mostly cirrus clouds, calm air. 3.6 miles.
Blue-ringed Dancer, Argia sedula 11
Desert Forktail, Ischnura barberi 1
Common Green Darner, Anax junius  2
Blue-eyed Darner, Rhionaeschna multicolor 1
Variegated Meadowhawk, Sympetrum corruptum 2
Western Pondhawk, Erythemis collocata >25
Blue Dasher, Pachydiplax longipennis >50
*Comanche Skimmer, Libellula comanche 2
Flame Skimmer, L. saturata >40 including a pair in wheel and an ovipositing female.
*Marl Pennant, Macrodiplax balteata 5
Black Saddlebags, Tramea lacerata 16 including one pair in tandem.
Note: Only one forktail seen, very odd for this location.

Peter Gaede

Dos Palmas Preserve this morning too, but stayed a little later into the day (0830-1330).

I kept a list independently, and had 17 species. Temps hit 100° F by the time I left.

Rambur’s Forktail—4.

Desert Forktail—7.

Citrine Forktail—6 (ph).

*Powdered Dancer (Argia moesta)—1 blue female (ph).

Blue-ringed Dancer—24, including several pairs ovipositing (ph).

Paiute Dancer—3, including one in hand.

Common Green Darner—3.

Flame Skimmer—40+.

*Bleached Skimmer (Libellula composita)—4 (ph.; one in hand).

**Widow Skimmer (Libellula luctuosa)—I teneral female (ph).

Comanche Skimmer—11 (ph).

Mexican Amberwing—1 male (ph).

Western Pondhawk—16.

Variegated Meadowhawk—1.

Blue Dasher—60+.

Black Saddlebags—10, one pair ovipositing, one in tandem.

*Marl Pennant—7 (ph).

…….

Tom Benson

San Bernardino County

Glen Helen Regional Park

*Giant Darners Anax walsinghami  - two OC# 462183

…….

Mono County

Ron & Barbara Oriti

Fish Slough

*Four-spotted Skimmer Libellula quadrimaculata - One

 

April 21 2017
Sonoma County
Kathy Biggs

Took a quick dash out to the Bloomfield Rd site to look for SF Forktails (Ischnura gemina). Found one male out and got images of him.

*SF Forktails (Ischnura gemina)

Pacific Forktail - 3M

Western Forktail - 1M

CA Darner - 1M

They were all seen in the roadside ditch along Petaluma-Valley Ford Rd. between Bloomfield Rd and Bloomfield Ck. on the east side of the road. It's interesting because I believe that this ditch is ephemeral. There are many ephemeral ditches about the tiny town and it would be wonderful if someone could check them out soon. I can't as we'll be gone this next week, infact, I only had 20 mins to spend at the site today. It would also be interesting to find out if the SF Forktails at Fort Point are up and about already too.

….

Alan Wight

 Nagasawa Park in Santa Rosa

Pacific Forktail – many

Western Forktail – 1 female

Bluet sp. – 6+

Vivid Dancer – 1

Black Spreadwing – 8+

Beaverpond Baskettail - 5+

Darner sp. - 4+, likely California

Cardinal Meadowhawk - 4+

Flame Skimmer – 1 female, first of year

*Eight-spotted Skimmer Libellula forensis – 2+, first of year

Western Pondhawk Erythemis collocata – 2-3, first of year

 

April 19, 2017

Inyo County

Ron & Barbara Oriti

Rawson Ponds

Black Saddlebags – a few

 

April 15, 2017
Santa Bernardino County 

Doug Karalun

Weather was in the 80s so more odes are coming out.

Plunge Creek

Rhionaeschna sp. 2

Vivid Dancer 15

East Highland Reservoir

Tule Bluet 10

Pacific Forktail 20

Blue-eyed Darner 1

Blue Dasher 3

Flame Skimmer 2

*Mexican Amberwing Perithemis intensa 1

 
April 11, 2017
Santa Barbara County 
Hugh Ranson

Lake Los Carneros, Goleta

Flame Skimmer (2)
*Red Saddlebags Tramea onusta (1)

Common Green Darner (1)

Blue-eyed Darner  (4)

Blue Dasher  (1)

Tule Bluet  (10)

Familiar Bluet (5)

Pacific Forktail (3)

Santa Ynez Valley

Wim Van Dam

*Northern Bluet photographed

Western Forktail photographed

 
April 10, 2017
Sonoma County
Dave and Kathy Biggs
Pine Flat Rd., east of Healdsburg
*Arroyo Bluet Enallagma praevarum
Cardinal Meadowhawk
 
April 9, 2017
Riverside County
Peter Siminski
Dos Palmas Preserve; Dos Palmas oasis, Felger oasis, Agua Farms and fish ponds; Elev. -100’ to -240’; 7:00-11:55, 60-68F, mostly cirrus clouds, breezy NW. 3.6 miles.
*Paiute Dancer, Argia alberta 2
Blue-ringed Dancer, A. sedula 8
Vivid Dancer, A. vivida 1
Rambur’s Forktail, Ischnura ramburii 10
*Desert Forktail, I. barberi 2
Common Green Darner, Anax junius  2
Blue-eyed Darner, Rhionaeschna multicolor 1
Variegated Meadowhawk, Sympetrum corruptum 2
Western Pondhawk, Erythemis collocata 11
*Blue Dasher, Pachydiplax longipennis >75
*Flame Skimmer, Libellula saturata 16
*Black Saddlebags, Tramea lacerata 2
…….
Napa County

Dave and Kathy Biggs

We had to go to Napa, to pick up a new kayak. Decided to make the most of it and hike in Skyline Park while there. Some wildflowers, but some Odes too!!

Beaverpond Baskettail (4-12) FOY

Pacific Clubtail (1 y m). FOY

Calif. Darner (1-3)

Vivid Dancer (5 y m)

Pacific Forktails

a lone female Bluet

 
April 4, 2017
Sacramento County
Dave Johnson

Sailor Bar on the American River Parkway

California Darner - 3-4 male

*Wandering Glider Pantala flavescens  - 1

Pacific Forktails - 10-15

Western Forktails - 10-15

Tule Bluets - several

…….

Mono County

Ron & Barbara Oriti

Fish Slough

Common Green Darners - Couple

*Western Pondhawk Erythemis collocata - One

 

 

MaRCH

 

 

March 31, 2017
Sonoma County

Alan Wight

Nagasawa Park in Santa Rosa,

Pacific Forktail – many

Western Forktail – 2-3, females

Tule Bluet – 1

*Black Spreadwing Lestes stultus – 2-3, by ephemeral pond, first of year

Variegated Meadowhawk – 1

Cardinal Meadowhawk – 1, female

Darner sp. – 1

Beaverpond Baskettail – 2

 
March 30, 2017
Sonoma County
Kathy & Dave Biggs
Sebastopol backyard pond – a new record # of Odes on the pond today!!
Cardinal Meadowhawk, Sympetrum illotum 20 emerged plus one mature on territory (new record # of emergers)
Pacific Forktail – 2 males and a female
*Exclamation Damsel Zoniagrion exclamationis – 29 males, 7 females plus one tandem
Brian Webb
Santa Rosa Creek
*Pacific Clubtail Phanogomphus kurilis
..
Alan Wight
Santa Rosa- Keysight Technologies on Fountaingrove Parkway
Beaverpond Baskettail
 
March 29, 2017
Sonoma County
Kathy & Dave Biggs
Sebastopol backyard ponds

Cardinal Meadowhawk, Sympetrum illotum, - only a teenager - not all the way 'colored up' to the Cardinal Red he'll mature to. Only the first Cardy of the year can hold a territory while still so young....
California Darners have continued to emerge each nite for a week now.

..

Gloria Conley says they had their first one of the year too on their pond here in Sebastopol, Sonoma Co., CA

Alan Wight

Nagasawa Park in Santa Rosa

Pacific Forktail – many

Tule Bluet – 12+, first of year (http://www.sonic.net/~shwand/odonata/tule_bluet_7626.jpg)

Vivid Dancer – 1

California Darner – 3, my first of year

*Beaverpond Baskettail Epitheca canis 1, first of year

Cardinal Meadowhawk – 1, my first of year

….
Sacramento County
Dave Johnson

Sailor Bar on the American River Parkway

1 male California Darner

10-15 Pacific Forktails

10-15 Western Forktails (the earliest that I have seen this species at Sailor Bar (April 9 previous early record)).

 

March 19, 2017

Inyo County

Ron & Barbara Oriti

we were surprised by what we saw at one of the canals  --  a few Common Green Darners, a few Mosaics, sp., but at least 30 #Variegated Meadowhawks.  We have never seen that many before in March.  This early it is usually just an occasional ode or two.

Ron also found some teneral damselflies.   Ode season is starting, and with all the water this year, it could turn out to be really interesting!

 
March 18, 2017
San Bernardino County

Doug Karalun with Matt Grube

Plunge Creek

Nothing

East Highland Reservoir

Pacific Forktail

Tule Bluet

Flyby of a large darner

Badger Basin

Pacific Forktail

Black-fronted Forktail

Vivid Dancer

# Common Green Darner Anax junius

Rhionaeschna Darner

Variegated Meadowhawk

Lost Lake

Familiar Bluet

*Blue-eyed Darner Rhionaeschna multicolor

Cajon Creek 

Nothing

Inyo County

Ron & Barbara Oriti

Owens River

Common Green Darners – a few

 

March 17, 2017
Sonoma County
Jacki Sones
a beach in Bodega Bay
#*Pantala, 1, likely Pantala hymenaea, cruising along (arrived 2 days before a warm storm)

 

March 13, 2017
Sonoma County
Kathy & Dave Biggs
Bloomfield

Hunt for SF Forktails. With an early date of 3/8/1980, and our terrific weather and their known haunt just 7 miles down the road (, I convinced Dave to take us there to hunt for them. We found 7 Forktails, all males, but the 5 who we were able to ID were

Pacific Forktails, and the other 2 appeared to be no different. Earliest day in last 2 decades is 4/1, so we'll try again around then. Also found 2 Pacific Forktails on our own pond today. But no Cardinal Meadowhawks.

 
March 12, 2017
Sonoma County
Dave Biggs
Our backyard pond, Sebastopol
*Cardinal Meadowhawk Sympetrum illotum – 1 teneral on maiden flight
…….

San Diego County

Doug Aguillard

Paradise Hills. San Diego,

while covering a house fire, a

*Red Rock Skimmer Paltothemis lineatipes flew by and started flying low, up and down the street where excessive water was flowing down the street.

 
March 11, 2017
Sonoma County
David Hoffmann
Salmon Creek Road
*California Darner Rhionaeschna californica– 1female photographed
 
March 10, 2017
Sonoma County
Kathy & Dave Biggs
Our backyard pond, Sebastopol
Pacific Forktail – 1 mature male
Sonoma County
Alan Wight
Nagasawa Park in Santa Rosa
Pacific Forktails (15) along the shore of the lake, including a pair in wheel. 
*Western Forktail Ischnura perparva– 1 male photographed
………
San Bernardino County

Doug Karalun

Temperatures were in the 80s in Highland today. - 7 species

East Highland Reservoir

*Tule Bluet Enallagma carunculatum 10

Pacific Forktail 20

Plunge Creek

Unidentified Darner 1

Church Street Drainage

*Black-fronted Forktail Ischnura denticollis 50+

*Familiar Bluet Enallagma civile        2

Vivid Dancer           2

Variegated Meadowhawk     2

 
March 9, 2017
Sacramento County
Dave Johnson
Sailor Bar, American River, Sacramento
Pacific Forktail – 1
 
March 2, 2017
Sonoma County
Kathy & Dave Biggs
Ellis Creek Wetlands, Petaluma
Pacific Forktail – 2 maiden flights observed, surely this species. No mature forktails seen.
…….
Santa Barbara County
Hugh Ranson
I took a walk along the rushing San Jose Creek in Goleta today.
A week ago the creek was roaring--the first time it has done so in many a year--and I wondered how dragonfly nymphs could survive such a pounding and scouring.
I didn't think I'd see any odes, but was pleasantly surprised to come across one
Vivid Dancer--a survivor.
 
March 1, 2017
Sonoma County
Alan Wight
Nagasawa Park in Santa Rosa
Pacific Forktails (30+) along the shore of the lake, including a pair in wheel. 
Variegated Meadowhawk - 1
 
February
 
February 28, 2017
Sonoma County
Gloria Conley
Her Sebastopol backyard pond
*Pacific Forktail Ischnura cervula – 1 maiden flight observed, surely this species.
 
February 26, 2017
Riverside County
Peter Siminski
Dos Palmas Preserve; Dos Palmas oasis, Felger oasis, Agua Farms and fish ponds; Elev. -100’ to -240’; 7:55-10:50, 58-60F, cloudless sky, calm air. 3.6 miles.
Blue-ringed Dancer, Argia sedula 1
*Rambur’s Forktail, Ischnura ramburii  1
Variegated Meadowhawk, Sympetrum corruptum 3
 
--California HAD RAIN AND FLOODS ALL MONTH….THUS THE SCARSITY OF REPORTS--
 
January

 

 

January 29, 2017
Humboldt County
Tony Westkamper
Van Duzen River.
Variegated Meadowhawk -My arrival was heralded by a small dragonfly which I was delighted to see. For the last 4 or 5 years I've been ID'ing this species.
It seems to overwinter here, or at least they stop on their migrations.
Dragonflies being warm weather critters this is most unusual and I have often been the last in a year and the first in the next year to report a dragonfly in all of California.
I noted 3 or 4 specimens, but none of them were interested in getting their portraits done.
In fact they were extremely skittish.
I got one and only one shot and thank goodness for a long lens and high pixel count so I could crop the image.
The big thing here is they survive the cold overnight temperatures. How or why remains a mystery.
 
January 16, 2017
Santa Barbara County
Hugh Ranson
More Mesa -,right along the coast.

I saw my first ode of the year today--you guessed it, a Variegated Meadowhawk-It was a quite fresh-looking individual. I saw another distant ode at the same location, probably this species, too.

 
January 10, 2017
Sonoma County
Alan Wight
Keysight Technologies site on Fountaingrove Parkway in Santa Rosa
I saw my first Variegated Meadowhawk of the year
 
January 8, 2017
Santa Barbara County
Wim Van Dam
Alamo Pintado Creek in Solvang

*Vivid Dancers Argia vivida

*American Rubyspots Hetaerina americana

…….
Santa Bernardino County

Doug Karalun

Took advantage of the 75 degree weather to get out.  In Highland in a flood control ditch I saw a

*Variegated Meadowhawk Sympetrum corruptum male.