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Archive for the ‘Odonata’ Category

A Distribution of Wyoming Odonates

In Odonata on August 28, 2013 at 3:46 pm

We are finally over the hubbub of our move from the Missouri Ozarks to Lander, Wyoming.  As of August 1, 2013, we are Official Wyomingites.  I’ve even managed to put a couple hundred miles on the old Jeep, scouting out promising sites, and swinging my trusty net to capture new and different dragonflies and damselflies–many species that I never encountered in Missouri.  Using all the sources available to me, plus new records that I’ve been able to document, I’ve tried to present a clear picture of the dragonflies and damselflies one might expect to encounter here in the Cowboy State.

A link to the report is given below. Feel free to use the information in any non-commercial manner you wish. Enjoy. Data is complete through August 28,, 2013.  The report will be updated regularly.

Wyoming Odonate Distribution

 

 

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My First Entomological Expeditions in the Rockies

In Expeditions, Odonata on August 8, 2013 at 3:01 pm

Almost all the hubbub of moving, hauling, and unpacking is over, so I decided to sally forth on Tuesday and Wednesday, to see if I could locate any odonates here in Fremont County, Wyoming.  Almost ALL of the species I’m likely to encounter here are different than the ones I (more-or-less) had learned back in the Missouri Ozarks, so I’m starting all over again, with even WORSE taxonomic skills than before.

I drove south out of Lander, out toward the Sinks Canyon State Park, about six miles out of town.

This is what I get to look at, about five miles from my home.

This is what I get to look at, about five miles from my home.

The ubiquitous Popo Agie River, where I’d hoped to find lots of odonates, was pretty much a bust, as the water is very swift, full of large rocks, and has very little shoreside vegetation.

The  "rise" of the Popo Agie, Sinks Canyon State Park.

The “rise” of the Popo Agie, Sinks Canyon State Park.

After hitting a couple of sites n the river, I happened upon Central Wyoming College’s field station, just off the highway.  The Popo Agie runs through the station, but there is also a sweet little “seep” creek running through tall grasses on the property.  After swinging the net for a few minutes, I managed to capture two species of meadowhawks there, Sympetrum obtrusum (White-faced meadowhawk) and Sympetrum pallipes (Striped meadowhawk), both of which I believe are county records for Fremont County.

S. pallipes

S. pallipes

S. obtrusum

S. obtrusum

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I then hit a small creek crossing the highway, about halfway back to town and there found several specimens of the damselfly Ischnura perparva (Western forktail), as well as another meadowhawk Sympetrum semicinctum (Banded meadowhawk) in a nearby hayfield.  All the bugs were found at 5400-5600′ altitude, awfully high for this Louisiana-born geezer.

Ishnura perparva

Ishnura perparva

Sympetrum semicinctum

Sympetrum semicinctum

The following day, I decided to range further afield, passing by the previous day’s collection sites, heading higher into the beautiful Wind River Range of the Rocky Mountains.

Climbing higher into the Winds, still only about ten miles from home.

Climbing higher into the Winds, still only about ten miles from home.

DSCF3615

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Inside the Shoshone National Forest, I found a lake, Worthen Meadow Reservoir,  In a small arm of the beautiful lake, kinda semi-marshy, with some pondside vegetation, I managed to grab four beautiful male Lake darners (Aeschna eremita), at 8871 feet above sea level, by far the highest altitude I’d EVER attained.

Aeshna eremita (male)

Aeshna eremita (male)

Same bug, dorsal view.

Same bug, dorsal view.

 

 

Isn’t that a FINE looking fellow?

 

 

On the way home, stopped back at the field station and grabbed a couple more of the previous day’s meadowhawks.  Later in the day, I grabbed Amanda and Susan, taking them back out into the field and up into the Winds, where I showed them Worthen Meadow Lake, and we explored another lake, Fiddler Lake, which lies at some 9400′ altitude.  Felt like I needed a couple of Sherpas and some supplemental oxygen.  Our apartment is at about 5500′ and I’ve not noticed any headaches or ailments in my first days as a Wyomingite, although I DO tend to get sleepy about ten o’clock in the morning.  Very dry, too.  I’ve lived my entire life in humid climates, and this is a BIG change.

As always, all my odonate specimens have been posted to Odonata Central (www.odonatacentral.org), and I’m grateful to Jim Johnson, one of the northwest’s premier “bug guys” for confirming the identity of the species.  I got about 75% of them right on the first try, which is GREAT for me.  Bob DuBois’s Dragonflies and Damselflies of the Rocky Mountains and Dennis Paulson’s indispensible Dragonflies and Damselflies of the West are gonna get a BIG workout here.

Come see us.

Demoiselles

In Odonata on April 2, 2013 at 2:40 pm

One of the many hobbies that my wife finds stupid involves studying, identifying, and capturing “odonates”–dragonflies and damselflies.  In a nutshell, dragonflies tend to be somewhat larger, fly quickly and strongly, and they hold their wings horizontally when perching.  Damselflies, supposedly named for their petite bodies (beautifully captured by the French word ”demoiselle”), are slender, tend to flutter rather than streak, tend to hold their wings paralll to their bodies when at rest, and are MUCH easier for an almost-sixty-year-old geezer to catch.

That being said, my favorite among all the damselflies is a broad-winged lovely called Calopteryx maculata, the Ebony Jewelwing.  These gorgeous little bugs are found in profusion all over my beloved Ozarks, particularly near swift, clear streams, and often flutter about a shallow-water, grassy/bushy plant that I believe is called “water willow“.  (Thanks to Dennis Bell, my old buddy who teaches botany at the University of Louisiana-Monroe, for the plant identification.)  As a matter of fact, my current stupid project is to try to personally document the presence of these insects in every one of Missouri’s counties, with my progress thus far shown on this map: 

Even a neophyte such as I can catch them, and it’s simple to differentiate the sexes, even from a distance.  The males have solid black wings, and an irridescent body, while the wings of the females are a translucent brown, with a prominent white spot (or “pterostigma”) on the wings.

 
 So…a couple of days ago, I’m sitting on my front porch, swilling a cold, adult beverage and supporting the Missouri brewing industry.  Susan, my eight-year-old daughter (Yes, I am almost sixty!  Yes, I have an eight-year-old daughter!) and her friend Sadey were racing around the yard with nets, wreaking havoc among the butterflies in the yard.  They’d grab one, then bring it over to me for identification.
  

All their hard work was making me tired, so I yelled out, “You guys want to go to Hunter Creek?”  Eight-year-old girls (and sixty-year-old guys) LOVE to go swimming at Hunter Creek, where crystal water spills over bedrock into deep gravelled pools, with a hundred-foot cliff as a backdrop, and LOTS of water willow.
 
Within an hour, we were there.  I piddled around on the bank, catching a few species of Argia damselflies, a delicate little bluish bug, while they splashed about, leaping off an eight-foot rock into the pool, and swarming about with their bug nets.  I, meanwhile, was basking, lizardlike, on a large mid-stream rock, still helping to improve the stock price of Anheuser-Busch.
 
After awhile, the girls came over to rest.  Nearby, the jewelwings were going about their buggy business.  The males are quite territorial, defending small stretches of streambank from rivals.  When an intruder appears, they rush toward each other, ebony wings flashing, and one usually retreats.  The victor then sits on a leaf, preening and flexing, and acting VERY nonchalant about the whole affair.
 
I pointed out one of the males to the girls.  “Watch that guy,” I said.  “His name’s Liam (using the name of one of their third-grade classmates), and he’s just sitting around on the beach, keeping an eye out for girls.”
 
A few feet away, a female alit, pointedly ignoring Liam.  “That’s Sadey,” says I.  “She’s wearing her new bikini, and hoping the boys notice her.”  The girls giggled a bit.  Another female settled down in the general area.  “There’s Susan, in HER bikini.  Watch what happens now.  Each girl damselfly will start to stretch her wings, and stick out her chest, showing off for Liam, hoping he’ll like her better.”
 
When I turned around, Human Susan and Human Sadey were stretching and preening, and trying to show the damselfly girls what to do.  It must have worked, for Liam soon forsook his perch and zipped over to Bug Sadey, and the two disappeared into the underbrush.
 

 
Girl Susan was somewhat devastated.  In a moment, however, another male arrived on the scene.  Girl Sadey was still crowing over her victory over Liam.  “Who’s that new guy on the scene?” I asked.
 
Susan didn’t hesitate.  “It’s Justin Bieber!!, she squealed, resuming her posturing.  Young Mr. Bieber, for those uninformed souls, is a rather androgynous, seventeen-year-old singer, who is adored by eight-year-old girls, who are said to be consumed with “Bieber Fever”.
 
After but a moment, Bug Justin and Bug Susan lit out for the weedy area, as Susan boasted.  “Susan got Justin, and Sadey got stuck with Liam!!!”.
 
At any rate, we had a fine old time.  Two Ozarkian eight-year-olds learned a new bug, and they can tell the boys from the girls.  I really hope, however, that my two demoiselles don’t try out their fluttering and preening the next time THEY go to the beach.
 

In Search of the Elusive Jewelwing

In Odonata on April 2, 2013 at 2:27 pm

My old friend from northeastern Louisiana, Kelby Ouchley, is a biologist. He retired recently from his job as Area Manager of the Black Bayou Wildlife Refuge, near Monroe, and hasn’t slowed down since.
Ebony jewelwing (male). Original artwork by Susan Louise Sims, age 7.

Kelby hosts a program on the local NPR radio station, as well as a blog, both called Bayou Diversity (www.bayou-diversity.com), is a birder, an accomplished photographer, and has his fingers in pies all over north Louisiana.  Last year, he posted a couple of pictures of odonates (dragonflies and damselflies) on Facebook.  I made the mistake of responding to the post, and before I knew it, I was caught up in the International World of Bug Catching.

I hope my wife doesn’t total up all the money I’ve spent on reference books, collecting supplies, nets, chemicals, and fuel for my new hobby.  I already belong to the Dragonfly Society of the Americas, and am corresponding with odonate experts and enthusiasts all over the country.

My identification skills, for almost ANY animals, has always been fairly rudimentary, but I have all sorts of dichotomous keys to walk me through the individual bugs’ characteristics, before making a final determination.  I’ve bought a microscope so that I can look at their little reproductive organs. 

Identifying damselflies by their “terminal appendages” (butts).  I do believe that this is Enallagma civile, the Familiar Bluet.

Odonates begin their lives as aquatic nymphs, which look nothing like the adult bugs, and may spend up to a couple of years in that state. 

Typical dragonfly nymph.

I’m even beginning to learn how to identify the nymphs, by species.

Typical damselfly nymph. Note the three tail-like gills on the posterior end.

As a rookie odonatologist, I tried to come up with a fairly simple project, in order to hone my identification skills, get me out of the house, and learn a bit more about these fascinating creatures.

Ebony Jewelwing (male), North Fork of the White River, Ozark County, Missouri

In the crystal-clear Ozark streams in my area, a beautiful little damselfly, the Ebony Jewelwing (Calopteryx maculata), is found in great profusion.  These little flutterers are IMPOSSIBLE to misidentify, as the males boast completely black wings; they flutter about gently, making them obscenely easy to catch; and almost nobody has ever spent much time collecting dragonflies or damselflies in my area.

Dr. John Abbott, of the University of Texas, has put together a magnificent website, called Odonata Central (www.odonatacentral.org).  Amateur and professional odonate collectors identify the specimens they have captured in their areas, then take pictures, and post them on the OC website.  The IDs are confirmed by experts, and the location of the collection is automatically plotted on a map, which can be viewed at national, state, or county level.  It’s VERY cool.  Go to the site, and check it out.  There are also a couple more dragonfly links shown at the bottom of this page.

Female, same location.

I decided that I would attempt to document the presence of Ebony Jewelwings in every one of Missouri’s 114 counties.  Before the 2010 flight season ended, I’d covered quite a bit of southern Missouri, driven a couple thousand miles, and had a wonderful time.  I’ve only completed something like forty-eight counties, but am enjoying myself immensely.  At first, I captured ONLY jewelwings, to document my search; now, however, as my identification skills improve, I’m gonna capture an example of every different species I can locate, hoping to add to the body of odonate knowledge in the Ozarks.

The Quest, through mid-August 2011. Fifty-five counties down, sixty to go. “Yellow” counties signify areas where jewelwings have been documented, but NOT by me. 

My wife thinks this is the absolute dumbest interest that any person could have.  “You fancy yourself some sort of scientist, don’t you,” she sneers.  “How much have you spent on gasoline, and books, and junk, for your bug-chasing projects?” she asks.  “Not nearly as much as I’d spend if I were a gambler, or a drinker, or chased women instead of bugs.”  .

I think I’ve got a good point.

Loaded for the Hunt. (I do NOT attempt to catch odonates with a nine-foot net, as shown for humorous effect.) The six-foot net telescopes down to three feet, which is the usually-used length.)

I’ve already turned at least one other guy onto this passion–Skyler McLean, in southern Arkansas.  We MIGHT even drive 800 miles to the Dragonfly Society of the Americas meeting in Colorado in July, and meet with all the “celebrities” in the Dragonfly World.

Walk Along With Me

In Odonata on April 2, 2013 at 2:23 pm

As a dragonfly/beetle enthusiast (or “amateur odonatist-slash-coleopterist”, if you will), I remember how bored I got last winter.  All the bugs had died off, or retired to their buggy cribs to wait out the cold weather.  I had little to do but read, and wait for the springtime re-emergence of my spineless friends.

THIS year, however, I figured I’d hold back some of the specimens I collected during 2011, to give me something to do in curating and identifying them while the winds howled through my Ozark holler.  This is the first day of December–certainly not even wintertime in Missouri–but the thermometer hit 18 F. this morning while I was driving Susan up to catch the school bus at 7 AM.

So…I decided to pull out just ONE of the odonates I caught on my trip to Montana last summer, and take YOU, gentle reader, through the cobwebby passages of my thought processes as this rank amateur attempts to pin down the identity of this little bug.

First, a word on the collection information:

I caught this animal at 1:00 PM, on July 21, 2011, in Lewis and Clark County, Missouri, in a roadside stream on Interstate 15, north of Helena, at milepost 198, elevation 3697′.  46.67461N, 112.01188W.  I assigned it my collection number D110721014.  D=dragonfly/damselfly.  110721=July 21, 2011.  014=the 14th specimen I caught that day.

So far, so good. 

I then slipped the little fellow out of the glassine envelope, where he’d rested for over four months.  Immediately after capture, I had placed the specimen in a glassine triangle, marked on the outside with the letter “R”, which represented Site “R” for the trip.  I also placed a slip of paper inside the triangle, marked with an “R” in pencil (pencil marks don’t tend to fade or become obliterated when soaked in acetone), so that I could be sure that the correct animal would always be correlated with the correct collection data, which I entered into my fieldbook, also labelled “R”.  I made sure the triangle was closed tightly and dropped the whole thing into a Mason jar of acetone.

(Since the Montana trip, I’ve modified my collection procedure somewhat, and now keep the triangles, with the live bugs inside, in a small tin box for a couple of hours, to allow the specimens to void their gastric contents, before putting the triangle into the acetone overnight.)

Okay.  Now the bug’s been sitting in a glassine envelope, with an index card listing all the collection data, since July.  I’ve entered all the collection data, including the collection number, and all the location data, into an Excel spreadsheet with holds all information pertaining to my odonate collecting.  I’ve left the columns “Name” and “Common Name” blank, until today (I hope!).

I look over the bug now, for the first time in months.  The first thing I notice is, “This is a damselfly”. 

Ladies and Gentlemen, THIS is a damselfly!

Pretty basic, but now I’ve eliminated a whole lot of dragonfly species from my identification efforts.  Most people can easily tell the difference, as the damselflies are much more delicate than their more robust cousins, and this particular specimen holds its wings parallel to its body, eliminating two of the three common families–the Calopterigidae (broadwings) and Lestidae (the spreadwings).  I’m now pretty sure I’ve got a member of the Family Coenagrionidae–the pond damsels, and a group that is a BEAR to identify.

I next notice that this is a MALE. 

Notice the ventral swelling on the second abdominal segment? “Congratulations, Sir. It’s a BOY!”

He has the diagnostic ventral swelling of secondary genitalia on the early abdominal segments.

Males are USUALLY a bit simpler to identify, since they don’t usually exhibit a wide range of morphological variation within species.  I also notice that he’s quite a bit SMALLER than the damselflies I’m accustomed to finding here in the Missouri Ozarks, so I measure him, finding him to be 28 mm in length, about an inch long.
 

Well, he’s been sitting in that envelope for over four months, and I manage to break off the abdomen during the measuring process; however, I retain both sections, and continue.

OK.  Now I start to think, “I found this specimen in a ‘roadside stream’ (rather than a pond)”.  In Missouri, most of the coenagrionids I find in MOVING (lotic) water are of the species Argia, while NON-MOVING (lentic)  lakes or ponds often yield Enallagma.  I don’t, however, know diddly-squat about Montana species, but am starting to lean toward eliminating Enallagma–the bluets–a horribly difficult genera to pin down.

I have no experience whatsoever with other genera in this family–Amphiagrion, Coenagrion, Ishnura, Nehalennia and Telebasis aren’t in my collection–and Amphiagrion, Nehalennia and Telebasis don’t appear to be common in my neck of the woods, but who knows about Montana?

Seems to me to be a good time to break out the reference books.  I COULD begin with a general key to all damselflies, such as would be found in Damselfly Genera of the New World or Damselflies of North America, and both of which are sitting before me on my computer table.  However, I first pull out Dennis Paulson’s Dragonflies and Damselflies of the West, and start casually looking through it, studying the range maps, and seeing if something jumps out at me.

Well, in checking over the generic descriptions, in Paulson’s book, I pause to read about “forktails” of the genus Ischnura:  “very small to small damselflies”, “‘Forktail’ refers to a forked projection at the end of S10 (the tenth, or last, abdominal segment) in males of most species.”  Hmmm.

Would you call this a “forked projection”?

I’ve been looking over the bug with a hand lens; now, my 60-year-old eyes can no longer pick up the details I need, so I put him under a dissecting microscope.  I take a few pictures with my idiot-proof, point-and-shoot digital camera, using the incredibly simple method of sorta mashing the lens up against the eyepiece of the microscope, and the subject loses his head in the process.

“The combination of green thorax and blue-tipped abdomen is mostly typical of forktails.”    

Green, striped thorax.

I check out a handy chart in Dr. Paulson’s book: Forktail (Ishnura) Identification, which lists THREE species with a combination of a) green, striped thorax, and b) S8-S9 (Abdominal segments 8 and 9) of males blue.  I immediately eliminate the Mexican Forktail, as it is found, as you might expect, in MEXICO, New Mexico, Arizona.  This leaves the Eastern Forktail and the Western Forktail.

HOWEVER, “[The Eastern Forktail] overlaps with…Western Forktails…as a major identification challenge.  Fortunately, there is another close-range field mark for males:  Eastern lacks tiny green spots on either side of prothorax present in Mexican and Western”. 

The bright green face is at the lower left, the postocular spots at the upper right.

 Moving right along, the book goes on to say that the Western Forktail has “face bright green, postocular (behind the eyes) spots bluish-green”.  I will, therefore, go out on a limb and declare that this is Ischnura perparva, the Western Forktail.

That little teardrop-shaped mark sure looks like a “tiny green spot” on the side of the thorax to me!   
 
Now comes the GUTSY part.  I’m gonna post this story right now.
 
THEN, I’m gonna e-mail Dennis Paulson, send him the story, and ask him to comment on my identification.  If I’m right, I will silently and humbly bask in my own glory.
 
If I’m WRONG, I’ll still keep the story, tell you what Dennis said, and let you appreciate just how much fun odonates are.
 
One hour later:
 
I AM DA MAN!!!!!!  Here’s the reply from Dennis Paulson:
 
Hi, George.

 
I would say you have followed the book’s instructions to the letter and (whew) come up with the correct identification. The tiny green spots on the prothorax are a good ID mark with which to distinguish these two when north of the range of the Mexican Forktail. Even better, the photo of the end of the abdomen of your specimen shows the more or less evenly forked paraproct (inferior appendage) of the Western Forktail. Note from the book that the lower fork is much longer in Eastern (p. 126).
 
Congrats! Now glue that head back on.
 
Dennis
 
I have now visited the major respository of odonate collection information, “Odonata Central” (www.odonatacentral.org), and have posted a record of my discovery.  I also glued the head back on.

Nymphomaniacs

In Aquatic macroinvertebrates, Odonata, Volunteer Water Quality Monitoring on April 2, 2013 at 2:04 pm

Okay.  I KNOW that 95% of the folks who’ve found this post had been on a Google search and were hoping to find pictures of naked young women.  Sorry, gang.

Yesterday, I made a 150-mile roundtrip drive from my home deep in an Ozark holler, up to Camdenton, Missouri.  I’d heard that Brett Landwer, an employee of the Missouri Department of Conservation and one of the nation’s top experts on the larval (or “nymph“) stages of odonates (dragonflies and damselflies) was gonna be giving a three-hour class on “The Ecology of a Fishless Pond”.

I’d never met Brett before, but had corresponded with him fairly frequently, usually bombarding him with dopey questions about bugs, and looked forward to the chance to meet him at last.

The presentation was given alongside a tiny woodland pond, located on the property of “Box Turtle Ranch”, tucked away in the forest up in Camden County.  A couple of dozen folks were in attendance, part of the Missouri Master Naturalist State Conference, which was just beginning.

I’ve belonged to the Master Naturalists for four years now.  Some folks, including a regional outdoor writer, take exception to the “master naturalist” title, and I’m afraid I tend to agree.  We are, by no means, “masters” of anything; rather, we are, I suppose, “enthusiasts”.  Grizzled old outdoor writers certainly know far more about “natural Missouri” than any of us, but I guess that the folks in charge of the program felt that “Old Farts Who Like to Learn About the Outdoors” probably wouldn’t attract many members.

Be that as it may, we were an enthusiastic group who assembled to hear Brett’s presentation.

Following the brief talk, the participants were invited to wade into the mucky pond, armed with nets, soup strainers, and other accoutrements, to sample the leafy detritus in search of whatever macroinvertebrates (“bug larva”) we might find.

Most of the Missourians chose to piddle about at the water’s edge, while Brett, nattily clad in his Official Department of Conservation Waders, and I, clad in a pair of $3 Louisiana Swamp Mucker watershoes, headed off for the depths.

During the course of the afternoon, the group found some cool stuff, including leeches, beetles, tadpoles and frogs, while I managed to dredge up a nice quantity of dragonfly nymphs.  I imagine EVERYONE reading this post knows what an adult dragonfly looks like.  (By the way, prior to the demonstration, I caught three VERY neat male adult Blue-faced Meadowhawks [Sympetrum ambiguum].  They are really cool-looking bugs, with red abdomens and blue-faces [as you might surmise, given their common names], and I’d never seen them before.  The specimens I captured, incidentally, were county records, the first recorded in Camden County, although they are NOT particularly uncommon in the area.)

A dragonfly. But you already knew that, didn’t you? This is NOT, by the way, the Blue-faced meadowhawk.

The nymphs, on the other hand, live their lives underwater, going through a series of changes (or “instars”) over a period of time before emerging into the dry world and changing into the adult form.  They don’t look anything like the adult forms.At the pond, I caught a half-dozen or so of these things, holding them up to Brett, who’d immediately identify them from twenty feet away.  I wasn’t sure if he was shining me on or not, but he spoke with great confidence.  He is, after all, the author of the definitive identification key to the odonate larva of Missouri (Landwer, Brett H. P. and Robert W. Sites, The Larval Odonata of Ponds in the Prairie Region of Missouri, Transactions of the American Entomological Society, Volume 136, Number 1+2, pp. 1-105, 2010).

After the presentation was over, and the other participants had drifted away, Brett invited me to accompany him on a collecting trip to Wet Glaize Creek in the Toronto Springs Conservation Area.  We drove out, and waded downstream a significant distance, particularly considering that I’d gone out and done my thrice-weekly exercising, including a five-mile walk, before making the drive up to Camdenton, capturing adult Hetaerina americana and an Argia sp. (A. translata, I think).  Brett dug out a couple more nymphs with his aquatic net, and we retired for the afternoon.

Basiaeschna janata.
Ophiogomphus westfalli.

  

Pachydiplax longipennis.
Plathemis lydia.

I’ve got tentative ID on all his nymphs, but plan to spend awhile with his key, and practice my taxonomic skills (such as they are!).

It’s always fun to get to meet the Big Bug Guys–folks with whom I’ve corresponded, and who’ve been so kind and helpful during the course of  my three-year-old entomological hobby.  Even though Brett’s two decades younger than I am (I’ve got UNDERWEAR older than he is!!!), he is a good teacher, and a lot of fun to wade the river with.

Okay.  Now you can go back to your search for nekkid women.

A Distribution of Louisiana Odonates

In Odonata on April 2, 2013 at 2:01 pm

Many dedicated “Bug Nerds” have been doing some wonderful work in documenting the odonate (dragonfly and damselfly) species to be found in Louisiana.  Foremost among this group is Bill Mauffray, whose 1997 study and recent updates form the basis for most of the information available on Bayou State odes.

In addition, nearly a dozen rabid collectors have waded the swamps, lakes and bayous to expand the scope of Louisiana Odonatology, collecting and photographing specimens and sharing their data with other enthusiasts.

 I have completely reworked my recent Distribution of Louisiana Odonates, incorporating all the information from Bill Mauffray’s 1997 Bulletin of American Odonotology paper, plus additional information found in the records of Odonata Central.  Please use this information in any non-commercial manner you find useful.  The information is current through December 18, 2012.

Louisiana Odonate Distribution

A Distribution of Idaho Odonates

In Odonata on March 19, 2013 at 11:40 pm

My friend, Kent Fothergill, moved from Missouri back to Idaho last year. As Kent is probably the most enthusiastic Bug Nerd I know, I decided to try to bring together as much information as I could locate on the odonate (dragonfly and damselfly) fauna of that state. This one’s for you, Kent!

Feel free to use this information in any non-commercial manner that you find helpful. The data is current through April 14, 2013.

Idaho Odonate Distribution