Latest adventure to Ten Acre Pond

large pond with clear skies above it

Ten Acre Pond on 18.v.2017. It had more water in it than I’ve ever seen! Photo (CC BY 2.0) by Andy Deans. See original: https://flic.kr/p/TEFoCA

It’s a good time of year to check in on our favorite local locale: Ten Acre Pond. It’s a well-know spot for dragonflies and other aquatic insects, and this is the time of year that activity heats up. We went on a short expedition yesterday to shake out the collecting cobwebs (it’s been months since we were properly in the field!) and see what was flying.

Our primary targets were Odonata, especially larvae and exuviae, but also adults. We’ve recently upgraded the storage of our Odonata larvae and exuviae, of which we have a rather sizable collection. (More on that collection soon, and Emily will present on it at the iDigBio data meeting next month!) We saw lots of damselfly and dragonfly adults flying (and a couple teneral damselflies). The water was so high, however, that it was difficult to find any exuviae. A painstaking search by myself revealed on a single trichopteran exuviae:

finger with small insect skin stuck to it

Caddisfly exuviae. Photo (CC BY 2.0) by Andy Deans https://flic.kr/p/UKsyQK

We did observe (and collected) a few adults, including:

  • Common Green Darner (Anax junius)
  • Comet Darner (Anax longipes)
  • Black Saddlebags (Tramea lacerata)
  • Carolina(?) Saddlebags (Tramea carolina) (It was quite red!)
  • Twelve-spotted Skimmer (Libellula pulchella)
  • Dot-tailed Whiteface (Leucorrhinia intacta)
  • Great Spreadwing (Archilestes grandis) *
  • Taiga Bluet (Coenagrion resolutum)
  • Eastern Forktail (Ischneura verticalis)
  • tons of American Bluets (Enallagma spp.)

* Hal White (in litt.) suggested that it was more likely an Amber-winged Spreadwing (Lestes eurinus), given the time of year. We looked at the specimen and now think it is a Spotted Spreadwing (Lestes congener).

We also observed lots of damselfly larvae, but we couldn’t find a single dragonfly larva. Perhaps they didn’t survive the dry-out last summer? See if you can see any:

plastic pan filled with half inch of pond water, including some grass bits and aquatic insects

D-net sample from Ten Acre Pond. Photo (CC BY 2.0) by Andy Deans https://flic.kr/p/Un7SA5

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