Arigomphus Needham, 1897 - Clubtails

Notes - MichiganSpecies List - References
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Page last updated: 18June 1999 (EB)

Notes on the Michigan larvae of Arigomphus

Of the seven North American species placed inthis group, three have been reliably recorded in Michigan (see mapsbelow). A single specimen for A.submedianus (Williamson,1914), quoted from Hagen (1885) and apparently listed as Gomphus pallidus, aspecies normally found in the southeastern USA, is missing and is nowthought not to be reliable, and thus has been removed from the statelist. Previously considered a subgenus of Gomphus (Needham 1897, Needham and Westfall1955, Walker 1958), this group currently is considered distinct enough tomerit generic status (e.g., Knoff 1977, Westfall andTennennsen 1996). Larvae are easilyrecognizable from other gomphids by the elongated abdominal segment10, the long laterally-flattened spines of abdominal segment 9, andthe large, incut teeth of the labium's lateral lobes.

Larvae usually borrow into loose, finesubstrates in sluggish sections of lakes and streams. Walker (1958) notes that larvae of A.villosipes prefer substrates "unchoked"with vegetation with soft muddy bottoms, whereas larvae ofA. cornutus and A.furcifer tended to frequent benthicareas with at least some aquatic vegetation. Emergence for thesespecies generally ranges from very late May through the first half ofJune.

WWW-Links concerning the ecology and biology oflarval Arigomphus:
Briefnotes on larval habitat from Houston, Texas area >>
Briefnotes on habitat from NE USA>>

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MichiganSpecies List

Map1Map 2
Map 3
Maps 1-4: County distribution of the Michigan species of
Click on map for a largerimage

Arigomphus cornutus (Tough,1900) - Horned Clubtail - Map 1
Arigomphus furcifer (Hagenin Selys, 1878) - Lilypad Clubtail -Map 2
Arigomphus villosipes (Selys,1854) - Unicorn Clubtail - Map 4

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Key to the Mature Larvae of Michigan Arigomphus
(Based on Needham and Westfall1955)

1a. Lateral spines ofabdominal segment 9 about equal or greater than 0.4x the mid-dorsallength of abdominal segment 10 (picture) - A. villosipes

1b. Lateralspines of abdominal segment 9 about equal to or less than 0.2x themid-dorsal length of abdominal segment 10 (picture) - 2

2(1). Large, larval length greater than 38 mm; epiproctless than length of paraproct (picture) - A. cornutus

2a.Small, larval length no greater than 35 mm; epiproct about equal tolength of paraproct (picture) - A.furcifer
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Hagen, H. A. 1885.Monograph of the earlier stages of the Odonata. Sub-families Gomphinaand Cordulegastrina. Transactions of theAmerican Entomological Society12:249-291.

Knopf, K. W. 1977.Protein variation in Gomphus(Odonata: Gomphidae). Unpublished Ph.D.thesis, University of Florida, Gainesville. vi + 107 pp.

Needham, J. G. 1897.Preliminary studies of North American Gomphinae. Canadian Entomologist29:164-168, 181-186 + 1 pl.

Needham, J.G. and M. J. Westfall, Jr. 1955. A Manual of the Dragonflies of NorthAmerica (Anisoptera). University of California Press: Berkeley,California. xii + 615 pp.

Selys-Longchamps, M.E. de. 1854. Synopsis des Gomphines. Bulletin de l'Académie royale des Sciences deBelgique 21:23-114.

Selys-Longchamps, M.E. de. 1878. Quatrièmes additions au synopsis des Gomphines.Bulletin de l'Académie royale desSciences de Belgique46:408-471,658-698.

Tough, J. 1900. A newspecies of Gomphus. Occasional Memoirsof the Chicago Entomological Society1:17-18.

Westfall,M. J., and K. J. Tennessen. 1996. Odonata, pp. 164-211,In AnIntroduction to the Aquatic Insects of North America, 3rd Ed. R. W.Merritt and K. W. Cummins (eds.). Kendell/ Hunt Publishing Company:Dubuque, Iowa.

Walker, E. M. 1958.The Odonata of Canada and Alaska, Vol. 2. University of TorontoPress: Toronto. xii + 318.

Williamson, E. B.1914. Dragonflies (Odonata) collected in Texas and Oklahoma.Entomological News 25(10):444-454.

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