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Photo#527232
Corduliidae: Somatochlora ______? - Somatochlora franklini

Corduliidae: Somatochlora ______? - Somatochlora franklini
Turtle River State Park, Grand Forks County, North Dakota, USA
June 9, 2011
Size: Length ~ 5.0-5.5 cm
I'm hoping this image may provide enough detail to identify the species. Thanks for any help! ;-)

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Somatochlora franklini
Are there bogs or fens in the area? Looks like Delicate Emerald (Somatochlora franklini) to me. It's a female from the video. According to Odonata Central, this is a state record and a really good find. Don't frass this.

 
Exciting News, Ben!
Yes, the Red River Valley here in North Dakota was flooded through mid-Spring, and we've had unseasonably cool and wet weather so far. The shallow river valley is surrounded by fens to the west (great for breeding waterfowl), but one must drive east over an hour into Minnesota find true bogs. In my opinion, the dot-tailed white face (Leucorrhinia intacta) seems unusually abundant in our area this Spring, which may or may not be helpful to know. Thanks for your expertise! You've inspired me to catch more dragonflies! ;-)

 
Great find!
I agree with Ben's ID too...The combination of the dark hindwing spot, darker second yellow thoracic patch and relatively delicate shape help cement the ID for sure, as the similar female Kennedy's would be more robust and have a more yellow-tinged hindwing spot, and the female Forcipate "should" show yellow spotting on the lateral face of most of the abdominal segments. These are the two other most similar species, based on the shape of the ovipositor and overall features.

 
Thanks, Denis!
Reading your analysis helps to catalyze my interest in learning more about our local dragonflies. I see that I have much to learn. Could you recommend a good reference work or text that would be particularly relevant to odonata of the upper midwest? Thanks. ;-)

 
Sure! "Dragonflies of the North Woods"
By Kurt Mead and "Damselflies of the North Woods" by Bob DuBois. These are two WONDERFUL guides which I use out east too, as we do share many species, but it is almost tailor-made for you...The maps show easternmost N Dakota and S Dakota, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, southern Ontario and easternmost Manitoba, so only the distribution maps are of somewhat more limited use. The pictures are great, the habitat descriptions are bang on and cutting edge.
Another awesome guide would be "the Dragonflies and Damselflies of Algonquin Provincial Park and the Surrounding Area" by Colin D. Jones, Andrea Kingsley, Peter Burke and Matt Holder. I like this one a lot because of the illustrations, as well as the excellent info too. I am sure others will have more good suggestions too. Happy Nature Watching!

 
Thanks, Denis!
Thank you! I'm ordering the first two books today! ;-)

might be
But these really need the appendages.

 
Thanks, Jason!
Can you get a better idea by looking at the specimen in this video clip? You can increase the clarity of the image to 1080p and pause the clip at any point to see appendages. ;-)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PoF6QnskeO0

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