Minnesota Dragonfly

St. Croix Snaketail

Ophiogomphus susbehcha

The St Croix Snaketail is a local species of Ophiogomphus that is found only in the St Croix and Chippewa River watersheds of Minnesota and Wisconsin. It was officially named and became a species in 1993, making it is one of the newest species in the area.

Identification

Field Marks
  • Average adult size is approximately 2.0 inches
  • Face is pale below with green on the frons and no facial markings, blue-grey eyes
  • Green thorax with bold shoulder stripes, third thoracic stripe is incomplete and 4th is straight and narrow
  • Dark abdomen with yellow candle-shaped top spots on segments 2 to 7
  • Segment 8 has a rectangular yellow dash, segment 9 a square spot and segment 10 a spot that blends into the pale color of the segment
  • Segment 10 and claspers are pale, claspers look like two pair of scissors, one on top of the other, with the cerci more open and the epiproct outlined in black and almost closed
  • Smudged yellow side patches on segments 8 to 9
  • Female looks similar to the male except with a broader abdomen with less clubbing on the end

Click on photos above for a close-up view.

Natural History

Behavior

Males patrol river territories or perch in the vegetation of nearby fields. Because mature adults are rarely seen it is believed that they do not live very long as adults

Habitat

Medium sized, clear, fast-flowing rivers in the St Croix and Chippewa River watersheds typically with a bed of sand and gravel

Reproduction

Females lay eggs by dipping. Nymphs burrow into sandy river beds

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.