The Dragonflies and Damselflies of North Carolina
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North Carolina's 187 Odonate species

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Related Species in AESHNIDAE: Number of records for 2020 = 0

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Shadow Darner (Aeshna umbrosa) by John Petranka, Sally Gewalt
Compare with: Black-tipped Darner   Springtime Darner   Green-striped Darner  
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Note: these identification tips apply specifically to mature males; features may differ in immature males and in females.

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mapClick on county for list of all its records for Shadow Darner
flight charts
distribution Essentially in the mountains and Piedmont, and sparingly in the western third of the Coastal Plain; probably in the Sandhills region.
abundance Fairly common in the mountains, rare to uncommon over most of the Piedmont, and very rare in the western Coastal Plain. However, abundance is somewhat difficult to assess, as the species often flies in late afternoon and near dusk, in shaded parts of forests. Also, it flies late in the season, when much odonate field work has subsided. Found in most counties within the range in the state. It is certainly not nearly as numerous or conspicuous as most darners of the spring and early summer seasons; however, it is one of the few darners that is more numerous in the mountains than it is downstate.
flight Because this is a late summer/fall species, the mountain flight occurs somewhat earlier than the flights downstate. In the mountains it occurs mainly from early July to mid-November, peaking in September and October, with a few records even to late November. In the Piedmont the flight is later, mainly from late August to early November, and possibly into late November. However, there are early records in the mountains and Piedmont as early as mid-June. The few flight dates from the Coastal Plain are from late August to late September, though it certainly must fly into November there.
habitat The vicinity of ponds, lake shores, marshes, and small streams, generally near wooded areas, but it can occur in open areas. Seldom seen near fields or areas far from water.
behavior Rather secretive, often staying in shady places. Can fly over small open areas, darting back and forth, but usually only in late afternoon.
comments Of the "common" dragonflies in the state (collected/reported in over 60% of the counties), this is not a well known species to many observers, as it is rather scarce or hard to find in the Piedmont. Unlike other darners, it seldom flies around open areas, fields, or ponds during the morning or early afternoon hours; it keeps more to shaded areas and later times of the day for flying.
S_rank S5
G_rank G5
date_spread [Overwinter:] [Date Spread:] [No Late Date:] [Split on Feb:] [Default:]
Species account update: LeGrand1234

Photo Gallery for Shadow Darner

Other NC Galleries:    Jeff Pippen    Will Cook    Ted Wilcox
Photo by: P Dixon

Comment: Madison, 2019-09-19, Broadwing Farm - Female
Photo by: B. Bockhahn

Comment: Stokes, 2019-08-20, Hanging Rock State Park, vade mecum
Photo by: Mark Shields

Comment: Watauga, 2019-08-08, Elk Knob State Park (ELKN); small marshy pond
Photo by: John Petranka

Comment: Burke; M, 2017-09-21, In a small partially shaded pond that was lined with American bur-reed and other emergent vegetation; on private property just south of Jonas Ridge. - Males.
Photo by: Jim Petranka, Becky Elkin, and Bill Booth

Comment: Burke; M, 2017-09-19, In large farm pond at Jonas Ridge. - Heteromorph female.
Photo by: John Petranka, Sally Gewalt

Comment: Watauga, 2016-10-25, Trout Lake, Julian Price Park, Blue Ridge Parkway. Marshy area around stream inlet near dam. 4 males, 1 female including I mating pair. Photos.
Photo by: John Petranka, Sally Gewalt

Comment: Alleghany, 2015-07-14, Stone Mountain State Park (STMO). Seep and boggy area near campground Loop B. - Male. Patrolling and hovering in shaded boggy area. Low light flight photo taken.
Photo by: Jim Petranka and Becky Elkin

Comment: Madison, 2014-10-18, new county record - flying above small woodland pond in partially shaded area
Photo by: Vin Stanton

Comment: Buncombe, 2012-09-20, Beaver Lake Asheville - Male & Female
Photo by: Vin Stanton

Comment: Buncombe, 2012-09-20, Beaver Lake Asheville - Male & Female
Photo by: Vin Stanton

Comment: Henderson, 2011-09-12, Fletcher Park - Male
Photo by: Vin Stanton

Comment: Henderson, 2011-09-12, Fletcher Park - Male
Photo by: Vin Stanton

Comment: Henderson, 2011-08-16, Fletcher Park Pond
Photo by: Vin Stanton

Comment: Henderson, 2011-08-16, Fletcher Park Pond
Photo by: Chelsea Rath

Comment: Avery, 2011-07-28, Blue Ridge Parkway
Photo by: Doug Johnston

Comment: Buncombe, 2011-07-23, North Buncombe county Leicester patch
Photo by: Doug Johnston

Comment: Buncombe, 2010-09-16, Small pond, Leicester patch, N Buncombe - Finally found this dragonfly still enough to photo
Photo by: Jason P. Love

Comment: Macon, 2009-11-28, Found flying along Middle Creek Rd near xeric pine-oak community - Netted and photographed
Photo by: Owen McConnell

Comment: Graham, 2007-10-27, - photo
Photo by: Ted Wilcox

Comment: Watauga Co., 2007-07-12
Photo by: Jeffrey Pippen - Jeff's website

Comment: Orange, 2006-10-15.
Photo by: R. Emmitt

Comment: Duke Forest
Photo by: Ted Wilcox

Comment: Ashe County, 2005-09-01