saffron-winged meadowhawk

(Sympetrum costiferum)

               
Conservation Status

IUCN Red List

not yet assessed

 

No Image Available

NatureServe

N5 - Secure

SNR - Unranked

Minnesota

not listed

Occurrence

Common

Flight/Season

Early June to late October

Habitat

Ponds, especially when bordered by marshes.

Size

Total Length: 1¼ to 1½

 

Identification

This is a medium-sized meadowhawk. It is one of the last dragonflies to be seen in the fall.

On males the thorax is brown on the top, red on the sides, and covered with brown hairs. The abdomen is red. On each side of the abdomen there is a line of low, poorly-formed triangles forming a black stripe. There is usually a thin black line on the upper (dorsal) surface of the 8th and 9th abdominal segments. The face is pale red. The legs are vertically striped yellow and black, becoming red and black in older individuals.

The leading edge of both wings is gold, becoming clear on older individuals. On all individuals the stigma is solid gold or red and the leading veins remain gold or reddish.

On females the abdomen is yellow and the face is light yellow or almost white. On juveniles the thorax is yellow without black markings.

 
Similar
Species

White-faced meadowhawk (Sympetrum obtrusum) has black legs. On juveniles, the veins near the base of the wing (where it attaches to the thorax) are yellow but the leading veins are black except at the base. The stigmas are black.


Larval Food

Mosquito larvae, other aquatic fly larvae, mayfly larvae, freshwater shrimp, very small fish, and tadpoles.

 
Adult Food

Mosquitoes, flies, small moths, mayflies, flying ants, termites, and other soft flying insects.

 
Life Cycle

After mating the female, still with the male still attached, lays eggs by dipping the tip of the abdomen into shallow water. Eggs overwinter and hatch in the spring. The nymphs emerge in at night from early June to late August.

 
Behavior

 


Distribution Distribution Map   Sources: 7, 16, 18.

Comments

 


Taxonomy

Order:

Odonata (dragonflies and damselflies)

 

Suborder:

Epiprocta

 

Infraorder:

Anisoptera (dragonflies)

 

Superfamily:

Cavilabiata

 

Family:

Libellulidae (skimmers)

 
Synonyms

 

 
Common
Names

saffron-winged meadowhawk


 

 

 

 

 

Glossary

Stigma

In plants, the portion of the female part of the flower that is receptive to pollen. In Lepidoptera, an area of specialized scent scales on the forewing of some skippers, hairstreaks, and moths. In Odonata, a thickened, dark or opaque cell near the tip of the wing on the leading edge.

 

 

 

 

 

       

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  Saffron Winged Meadowhawk
DianesDigitals
 
  Saffron Winged Meadowhawk  
 
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  Saffron-winged Meadowhawk
Andree Reno Sanborn
 
  Saffron-winged Meadowhawk  
 
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Sympetrum costiferum

 
     

 

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  Saffron-winged Meadowhawk (Libellulidae: Sympetrum costiferum) on Leaf
Carl Barrentine
 
   
 
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Uploaded on Aug 20, 2010

Photographed at the Rydell NWR, Minnesota (20 August 2010). Go here to find other images of this species: http://bugguide.net/node/view/27197/bgimage

 
     

 

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