Macrodiplax balteata (Hagen, 1861)
NatureServe Global Rank: G5
Virginia State Rank: S1
VA DGIF Tier: None
Federal Legal Status: None
Virginia Legal Status: None
Description: The Marl Pennant is a medium-sized blackish, dark-faced dragonfly of coastal marshes. The hindwing has a large black spot at the base. The size is 37-42 mm (1.5 - 1.7 inches).
Similar species: Other similar coastal species such as the common Seaside Dragonlet (Erythrodiplax berenice) have clear hind wings.
North American Range: The Marl Pennant is found strictly coastal in its range, from southern North Carolina (Dare County) south to Florida and along the gulf coast to Texas. Also to California and south into Mexico and the Caribbean. It may be only a stray into southeast Virginia.
VA Observations by Locality: Hampton, City of
Flight season and broods: Marl Pennant adults have been found 13 July - 14 August in Virginia.
Aquatic Habitat: The Marl Pennant prefers brackish lakes and ponds, but may wander from breeding habitat.
Behavior and Ecology: The Marl Pennant feeds off branches from ground level to tree tops but also occasionally feeds in mixed swarms. Males perch on emergent stems, usually far from the shore, and spend time patrolling and hovering over the water. Females deposit eggs in tandem.
Population trend and potential threats: It is rare in the southeastern United States, though common in Florida. There are very few records from North Carolina, and it was first recorded from Georgia only in 2006.
Management practices: Monitor and protect occupied habitats.
References: Carle, F.L., 1982. A contribution to the knowledge of the Odonata. Ph.D. thesis, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, Virginia. 1,095 pp.
NatureServe. 2011. NatureServe Explorer: An online encyclopedia of life [web application]. Version 7.1. NatureServe, Arlington, Virginia. Available http://www.natureserve.org/explorer (Accessed: Oct 18, 2012).
Paulson, Dennis. 2011. Dragonflies and Damselflies of the East. Princeton University Press. Princeton and Oxford. 538 pp.
Roble, Steven M. 2011. Dragonflies of Virginia- Flight dates. Unpub.
Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, Natural Heritage Program, 600 E. Main St., 24th Floor, Richmond, VA 23219
This atlas was compiled
by the VA Natural Heritage Program with funds provided by the VA Dept. of Game and Inland Fisheries through a state wildlife grant
from U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Last Modified: Friday, 26 February 2021, 03:21:56 PM