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Umber Shadowdragon

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Neurocordulia obsoleta

Say, 1839

Order Odonata
Suborder Anisoptera
Superfamily Libelluloidea
Family Corduliidae
Genus Neurocordulia
Species obsoleta (Say, 1839) [Libellula]


This brown, medium-sized species similar to the others. The thorax is darkest on the front, but divided as usual by a pale middorsal carina. The wings are clear or lightly tinted with distinct maculation including a large basal black spot present in each wing, but generally larger in the hindwings. There are a row of smaller brown spots on the antenodal crossveins and a larger spot at the nodus. This is the only shadowdragon with crossvein in the midbasal space of all wings. The legs are pale and the abdomen is brown w ith dark caudal appendages.


Total length: 43-48 mm; abdomen: 33-35 mm; hindwing: 30-33 mm.

Similar Species

Cinnamon (N. virginiensis ) and Smoky (N. molesta ) Shadowdragons lack spots on the front margin of their wing. Orange Shadowdragon (N. xanthosoma ) has a different wing pattern. Similar appearing baskettails (Epitheca ) have a yellow lateral stripe on their abdomen.


Rivers and lakes.


A single male was reported from Beauregard Parish on the Texas Louisiana border. It was also reported from Arkansas, but these records were later determined to be based on misidentified material. Nothing has been published about the behavior of this uncommon species though like others in the group it flies out over riffles at dusk.


Eastern U.S.