Calvert County Damselflies & Dragonflies: Part 15 – Damselfly Introduction and the Family Calopterygidae

Damselfly Introduction:
Maryland is represented by three families of damselflies comprised of a total of 57 species:
1) Calopterygidae (Jewelwings/Rubyspots) with 7 species;
2) Lestidae (Spreadwings) with 11 species; and
3) Conagrionidae (Damsels/Dancers/Bluets/Forktails/Sprites) with 39 species.

Richard Orr’s Maryland database information on the three southern Maryland counties have a reported 31 of the 57 Maryland species with 24 of those 31 species listed in Calvert County. A Cove Point (Calvert County) report lists 18 species as being present at that location with 8 of those being common to abundant.

The iNaturalist database for damselflies in the southern Maryland counties has only 12 species reported and the following number of research grade observations/number of species within each county:
Calvert County = 68 observations/7 species, St. Marys County = 6 observations/4 species, and Charles County = 19 observations/9 species. Obviously, much work remains to be done to bring the two databases closer in alignment.

Family: Calopterygidae (Jewelwings/Rubyspots)

The Ebony Jewelwing is the only member of this family found in southern Maryland and it has been reported in all three counties according to Richard Orr’s database. It is represented in the iNaturalist database for only two of the southern Maryland counties, Calvert and Charles Counties. For this species, my contribution to the Calvert County iNaturalist database has been a pair of observations made from Battle Creek Cypress Swamp where numerous individuals were sighted throughout the park.

Listed below are the observations for the three southern Maryland counties and a comparison of the two databases is made (as of March, 2020). As was done with the dragonfly families, I have included a note extracted from the book “Natural History of DelMarVa Dragonflies and Damselflies” by Hal White (reference 1). Of particular relevance for Calvert County, I have also included information on this species as observed at the Cove Point LNG Property and reported in “2011-2012 Survey of the Dragonflies and Damseflies (Odonata) of the Cove Point LNG Property (Calvert County, Maryland” by Richard Orr (reference 2).

Ebony Jewelwing/Calopteryx maculata
If a female has mated recently, the next male to copulate will remove the previous suitor’s spermatheca from the female and replace it with his own. (1)
Cove Point adult abundance and flight period – common/23-Apr to 29-Jul. (2)
iNaturalist research grade observations:​ Calvert = 28 (May-Aug)​ St. Marys = 0 Charles = 8 (May-Jun)
MD Biodiversity (i.e., Richard Orr):​Calvert – present St. Marys – present​Charles - present

Posted by rosalie-rick rosalie-rick, March 25, 2020 11:19 AM


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