Nehalennia Selys, 1850 (Coenagrionidae) -SpritesNotes -Michigan SpeciesList - Key -References
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Page last updated: 11August 1998
Notes on theMichigan Species of Nehalennia
Two species of this genus of small, slenderdamselflies have been recorded in Michigan (see maps below). Larvaeare usually found in the aquatic vegetation of the still waters ofmarshes, fens and sphagnum bogs. Walker's (1953) treatment for the two species remains a veryrecommended work. Larvae of N.irene are found among the macrophytes,sedges, cat-tails and other emergent vegetation in a wide assortmentof aquatic habitats, including still areas of streams and rivers,sloughs and ponds, and sometimes bogs. I. gracilis, on the otherhand, appears to be restricted to sphagnum bog habitats, with larvaefound near and alongside the margins of floating bog mats. Bothspecies may be locally abundant in their particular habitat. Adultsemerge from mid-May through July.
Other links with information on the biology orecology of larval Nehalennia:
Briefhabitats notes from the Houston, Texas, USA area >>http://www.io.com/~pdhulce/dragon3.html
Ottawa,Ontario survey, with brief habitat notes >>http://www.cyberus.ca/~jdsankey/odon2.html
Michigan SpeciesListMap 1Map 2
Maps 1-2: County distribution of the Michigan species ofNehallenia
Click on map for a largerimageNehalennia gracilis Morse,1895 - Sphagnum Sprite
Nehalennia irene (Hagen, 1861) - Sedge Sprite
Key toMature Larvae of Michigan Nehalennia
(References: Walker1953 and Westfall and May1996)
1a. Caudalgills with numerous small marginal spots (picture); posterolateralsurface of head with about a dozen short spines, which are darker atbase (picture) - N.irene
1b. Caudalgills unspotted or nearly so (picture); posterolateral surface with4-6 small colorless spines - N.gracilisback totop
Hagen, H. A. 1861.Synopsis of the neuroptera of North America, with a list of the SouthAmerican species. SmithsoniaMiscellaneous Collections 4:1-347.
Morse, A. P. 1895. NewNorth American Odonata. Psyche 7:207-211.
Selys-Longchamps, E.de. 1850. Revue des odonates ou Libellules d'Europe. Mémoiresde Société de Science de Liege 6:1-408 (reprint1-408).
Walker, E. M. 1953.The Odonata of Canada and Alaska, Vol. 1. University of TorontoPress: Toronto, Ontario. 292 pp.
Westfall, M.J., Jr. and M. L. May. 1996. Damselflies of North America. ScientificPublishers: Gainesville, Florida. x + 650 pp.back totop