Thursday, July 21, 2011

First Halloween Pennant Of The Season

I’ve been keeping my eye open for Halloween Pennants (Celithemis eponina) and finally, last Saturday, we saw our first halloweens of the season. We visited the Piedmont National Wildlife Refuge in Jones County, Georgia. A cold front was coming through. We had a brief relief from the daily 90+ F temperatures we’ve endured for the last few months. It was sunny with occasional clouds and a breezy with strong gusts from time to time. We stopped by a pond - an impoundment - in section #6 (at the top left-hand corner of the map, indicated by a large yellow arrow) to look for dragonflies. (Note: Google maps traces a ‘through’ road, but the only road that reaches the pond from Starr Road approaches from the southeast. The road back to Starr Road from the north end of the dam is closed.)

Map: Piedmont National Wildlife Refuge

The pond. This photo is taken from the dam looking northeast towards the upper end of the pond to the est.

We had the pond to ourselves so we just parked on the dam. This photo looks along the dam towards the woods beyond.

Did I mention it was windy? Between gusts of wind these cattails stood upright.

It always looks like pennants really enjoy the wind. They clasp a relative stable object and ride the wind. Sometimes they sway wildly in the wind and have to adjust wing position repeatedly to maintain their balance

This photo is out of focus because the dragonfly, a male, was in motion during a strong gust of wind.

Several views of this handsome dragonfly, in focus. This dragonfly is clasping a broad grass leaf. He’d positioned himself facing directly into the wind. He was blown around a little but, for the most part was fairly steady.

We didn’t see any female Halloween Pennants but you can see photos of a female here.
Click on an image to view a larger image

Identification resources:

- Georgia Dragonfly Survey: Halloween Pennant (Celithemis eponina)

- BugGuide: Halloween Pennant (Celithemis eponina) [Male]

Related posts:

- Dragonfly: Halloween Pennant

- Zen: Halloween Pennant on Rush by Water’s Edge

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