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Saturday, August 15, 2015

A record day

Today I set my personal record for the greatest number of dragonfly species seen on Bodega Head in one day.

Remember that Bodega Head isn't a great site for dragonflies it's often cold and windy, and there isn't much fresh water.  But on warm days in late summer/fall, species that are known to disperse along the coast often appear.  I was happy to set my own record, and to document one species that I hadn't observed on Bodega Head before.  

How many species do you think I saw?  (The answer is below this picture.)

Blue Dasher (Pachydiplax longipennis) — male

On 15 August 2015, I recorded 10 species of dragonflies on Bodega Head.  I was excited, but also a little frustrated, because I thought I should have been able to find one more species.

I photographed 8 out of the 10 species.  Although I have seen a Blue Dasher (above) in the Bodega Dunes, this is the first time I've photographed one on Bodega Head.

The next picture is a "documentary" image it's not a great photo, but it serves as a record.  This is the first time I've seen this species on Bodega Head.

 Western Pondhawk (Erythemis collocata) an ovipositing female

Below are the other six species I photographed today:

 Variegated Meadowhawk (Sympetrum corruptum) — male

 Cardinal Meadowhawk (Sympetrum illotum) — ovipositing pair

Black Saddlebags (Tramea lacerata) — male

Red Saddlebags (Tramea onusta) female 

Twelve-spotted Skimmer (Libellula pulchella) — male

 Common Green Darner (Anax junius) — male, in the upper left corner of the photo
[There is also a Black Saddlebags in the upper right corner.]

And the two species that I observed but didn't photograph?  Spot-winged Glider (Pantala hymenaea) and a mosaic darner, probably Blue-eyed Darner (Rhionaeschna multicolor).

I don't think it will be easy to see more than 10 species of dragonflies in one day on Bodega Head, but I'll keep trying, and I'd love to hear about your observations, too.

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