Somatochlora elongata (Scudder, 1866)
NatureServe Global Rank: G5
Virginia State Rank: S1S2
VA DGIF Tier: IV
Federal Legal Status: None
Virginia Legal Status: None
Description: The body length of the Ski-tipped Emerald is about 2.3 inches. The head is black with a yellow band across the middle. The thorax is brown and metallic green with a long anterior and shorter posterior yellow marking on the sides. The abdomen is black with a yellow spot on the second abdominal segment (base of the abdomen).
Similar species: The only similar species in Virginia is the Clamp-tipped Emerald (Somatochlora tenebrosa). The Clamp-tipped Emerald has duller spots and in the Ski-tipped Emerald the sub-genital plate points downward as an equilateral triangle, as opposed to the very narrow triangular shape in the Clamp-tipped Emerald. The clamp-like terminal appendages of male Clamp-tipped Emerald distinguish it from the more elongate terminal appendages of the male Ski-tipped Emerald.
North American Range: The Ski-tipped Emerald is found around the northern Great Lakes area of Northern Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan, west across Canada to the New England States, and south along the Appalachians to the northern tip of Georgia.
VA Observations by Locality: Giles | Highland | Highland
Flight season and broods: Found from late May through late September (June through July).
Aquatic Habitat: The Ski-tipped Emerald lives in slow-moving streams in bogs and swamps, as well as beaver ponds, and lake inlet/outlets. Usually open or partially open habitats.
Behavior and Ecology: Male Ski-tipped Emeralds have a slow flight and often hover while conducting routine patrols of the shoreline, occasionally perching on grasses or twigs. They often forage high, sometimes in the shade. Females oviposit along the edges of the shoreline tapping the water at intervals or may lay eggs in small seepage pools.
Population trend and potential threats: The Ski-tipped Emerald may be negatively impacted by poor water quality and habitat degradation.
Management practices: Populations should be monitored and habitats preserved.
References: Dunkle, Sydney W. 2000. Dragonflies Through Binoculars: A Field Guide to Dragonflies of North America. Oxford University Press, New York, NY. 266 pp.
West Virginia Division of Natural Resources: Wildlife Diversity Program. Dragonflies and Damselflies of West Virginia. http://martes.dnr.state.wv.us/Odonata/default.aspx Accessed: 4/8/2013
LeGrand, H., E. Corey and T. Howard. The Dragonflies and Damselflies of North Carolina. http://www.dpr.ncparks.gov/odes/a/accounts.php. Accessed: 4/8/2013
Paulson, Dennis. 2011. Dragonflies and Damselflies of the East. Princeton University Press, Princeton, NJ. 530 pp.
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: Tuesday, 24 January 2017, 10:12:03 PM