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Sedge Darner



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Aeshna juncea

Linnaeus, 1758


Order Odonata
Suborder Anisoptera
Superfamily Aeshnoidea
Family Aeshnidae
Genus Aeshna
Species juncea (Linnaeus, 1758) [Libellula]
Syn Aeshna rustica Zetterstedt, 1840
Syn Aeshna juncea americana Bartenev,
Syn Aeshna undulata Bartenev, 1930


Identification

This is a common species at higher elevations. It has a black cross-stripe on the face and the frontal thoracic stripes are well-developed. The lateral thoracic stripes are broad and straight. The pale anterior stripe is blue and narrowed above and yellowish below. The pale lateral spots on abdominal segments 1-2 are yellowish-green with the remaining pale spots blue. The male and blue form female are as above. Pale markings may also be green or yellow in females.

Size

Total length: 65-74 mm; abdomen: 47-54 mm; hindwing: 39-45 mm.

Similar Species

The bicolored appearance and shape of anterior lateral thoracic stripe is distinctive. Male Variable Darners (A. interrupta ) have short frontal thoracic stripes and pale blue spots laterally on segments 1-2.

Habitat

As its name implies it frequents marshes and ponds with sedges.

Discussion

Rush Darner barely ranges into the south-central United States (Taos, New Mexico). They patrol all day until dark along forested edges.

Distribution

Throughout Canada and Rocky Mountains of the U.S.