Illinois river cruiser

(Macromia illinoiensis illinoiensis)

Conservation Status
Illinois river cruiser
  IUCN Red List

LC - Least Concern

     
  NatureServe

N5 - Secure

SNR - Unranked

     
  Minnesota

not listed

     
           
           
           
           
           
           
 
Description
 
 

Illinois river cruiser is a large, slender, 1 to 3 long dragonfly.

The thorax is dark brown on the sides and top, iridescent green in front. There is a single yellow vertical stripe on each side of the thorax and no vertical stripe on the front of the thorax. The ridge in front of each wing base (antealar carina) is yellow.

The abdomen is long, slender, and black with yellow spots. Abdominal segment 2 has a yellow ring around it that is interrupted at the top and at the sides. There is a pair of small spots on segments 3 and 4; no spots or very faint spots on segments 5 and 6; one large, conspicuous spot on abdominal segment 7; and often a pair of dash-like spots on segment 8. On the male, segments 7 through 10 are conspicuously swollen, forming a club.

The wings are long, slender, and clear except for a black stigma at the leading edge of each wing. Juveniles often have yellow-tinted wings. Some females have orangish-brown wingtips.

The eyes are bright green and are in contact at the top of the head.

The legs are black.

 
     
 

Size

 
 

1 to 3 long

 
     
 

Similar Species

 
  Georgia river cruiser (Macromia illinoiensis georgina) is the southern subspecies. It has a half-length yellow stripe in the front of the abdomen. The ring around abdominal segment 2 is continuous, not interrupted. There are conspicuous yellow spots on abdominal segments 3 through 8.  
     
 
Habitat
 
 

Large lakes, large rivers, large streams

 
     
 
Biology
 
 

Season

 
 

Late June to early September

 
     
 

Behavior

 
 

 

 
     
 

Life Cycle

 
 

The female lacks an ovipositor, and must deposit her eggs by flying fast over the surface of the water and washing the eggs off of her body.

 
     
 

Nymph Food

 
 

 

 
     
 

Adult Food

 
 

 

 
     
 
Distribution
 
 

Distribution Map

 

Sources

7, 16, 17, 18.

 
  10/23/2012      
         
 

Occurrence

 
 

Common

 
         
 
Taxonomy
 
 

Order

Odonata (dragonflies and damselflies)  
 

Suborder

Epiprocta  
  Infraorder Anisoptera (dragonflies)  
 

Superfamily

Cavilabiata  
 

Family

Macromiidae (belted and river skimmers)  
 

Genus

Macromia  
       
 

Synonyms

 
 

 

 
       
 

Common Names

 
 

Illinois river cruiser

Swift river cruiser

 
       

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Glossary

Ovipositor

A long needle-like tube on the abdomens of some female insects, used to inject eggs into soil or plant stems.

 

Stigma

In plants, the portion of the female part of the flower that is receptive to pollen. In Odonata and Hymenoptera, a blood-filled blister or dark spot at the leading edge of each wing toward the tip, thought to dampen wing vibrations and signal mates. In Lepidoptera, an area of specialized scent scales on the forewing of some skippers, hairstreaks, and moths.

 

 

 

 

 

 
 
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    Illinois river cruiser   Illinois river cruiser  
           
    Illinois river cruiser      
           

 

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