Gomphaeschna Selys, 1871 - Darners
Gomphaeschna furcillata (Say, 1839) - Harlequin Darner

Notes - References
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Page last updated: 13 Jan. 2017

Notes on Gomphaeschna furcillata in Michigan

A genus of two species endemic to eastern North America.There is one widely-distributed species - G. furcillata - in northern Michigan. The only record of G. antilope is based on two female adults found dead on a lake in Grand Traverse Co. No other specimens have been found, and that remains an anomalous ocurrence for which we have no answers.

Map 1: County distribution of Gomphaeschna furcillata in Michigan
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Little is known about larval ecology or habitat of this species in Michigan, and no larval records are known from the state. Based on proximity of collected adults, both in Michigan and Wisconsin, larvae probably reside in densely wooded wetland or alder swamp habitats (see Tennessen 1992). Dunkle (1977) described habitat, rearing and emergence of larvae from swamps in Delaware and Flordia, and revised Walker's (1958) larval description. Only recently have larvae been described (see Needham and Westfall 1955), and specimens of larvae and exuvia have been difficult to find. The V-shaped notch of the median lobe of the prementum with its plumous-fringed anterior margin as well as the very long, 6-segmented antennae (about equal to the length of the head) clearly distinguish this species from other Michigan aeshnid larvae. Emergence has not been described, but based on collection of adults is probably late-May or early-June (Tennessen and Hudson 1997). Kennedy (1936) provides detailed information about female ovipositioning from a bog near Ithaca, New York, as well as egg and early larval development in the lab.

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Dunkle, S. W. 1977. Larvae of the genus Gomphaeschna (Odonata: Aeshnidae). The Florida Entomologist 60(3):223-225.

Kennedy, C. H. 1936. The habits and early stages of the dragonfly, Gomphaeschna furcillata (Say). Proceedings of the Indiana Academy of Science 45:315-322.

Kormondy, E. J. 1958. Catalogue of the Odonata of Michigan. Miscellaneous Publications of the Museum of Zoology, University of Michigan 104. 43 pp.

Needham, J. G., and M. J. Westfall. 1955. A manual of the dragonflies of North America (Anisopter), including the Greater Antilles and the provinces of the Mexican border. University of California Press: Berkeley. xii + 615 pp.

O'Brien, M. 1997. Surveying for Odonata in the Huron Mountains in 1996. Williamsonia 1(1):4.

Say, T. 1839. Descriptions of new North American neuropterous insects and observations on some already described by (the late) Th. Say.Journal of the Academy of Natural Science of Philadelphia 8:9-46.

Selys-Longchamps, E. de. 1871. Aperçu statistique sur les Névroptères Odonates. Transactions of the Entomological Society of London 19:409-416.

Tennessen, K. J. 1992. First records of Gomphaeschna furcillata and Anax longipes in Wisconsin (Odonata: Aeshnidae). The Great Lakes Entomologist 25(4):305-306.

Tennessen, K., and P. Hudson. 1997. More records of Gomphaeschna furcillata in the U.P. Williamsonia 1(3):2.

Walker, E. M. 1958. The Odonata of Canada and Alaska, Vol. 2. University of Toronto Press: Toronto. xi + 318 pp.

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