Minnesota Dragonfly

Arrow Clubtail

Stylurus spiniceps

The Arrow Clubtail is a long, slender Clubtail that is predominantly dark and has green eyes. They are strong flyers that are usually found around sandy bottomed, mid-sized and large rivers


Field Marks
  • Average adult size is approximately from 2.2 to 2.7 inches
  • Black and brown face with a yellow stripe on the top of the frons and green eyes
  • The front thoracic side stripes are broad, merging together and creating a yellow shoulder stripe between them that resembles an upside down exclamation point
  • Large hamules with a hook in the front
  • Black abdomen with small yellow top spots on segments 3-8
  • Some segments may have a line above the top spot
  • Narrow club, with yellow side spots on segments 8 and 9 that are bordered by black
  • Segment 9 is noticeably longer than segment 8 and longer than that segment on most other clubtails

Click on photos above for a close-up view.

Field Marks
  • Female is colored similarly to the male
  • More yellow on the face than the male
  • Has a pair of horns on the occiput
  • Female has yellow side stripes on all abdominal segments

Click on photos above for a close-up view.

Natural History


The Arrow Clubtail is a strong flyer, sometimes flying very fast, straight and low, like an arrow, and often flying past dark. Males patrol their territory by making low flights, just over the water or along the shoreline. When they rest they often perch on the top of a leaf making it sag under their weight


Sandy bottomed mid-sized to large rivers


To lay their eggs females dip their abdomen into the water while in flight

Range Maps

Click on the icons above for this species' range maps

Click here for county and state checklists from Odonata Central.

Range maps and checklists courtesy of Odonata Central. Copyright © 2016 OdonataCentral. All Rights Reserved. Abbott, J.C. 2006-2018. OdonataCentral: An online resource for the distribution and identification of Odonata. Available at www.odonatacentral.org.