The Dragonflies and Damselflies of North Carolina
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North Carolina's 189 Odonate species

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Sort Species by: Family   Scientific Name       [ Undocumented ]
Related Species in LIBELLULIDAE: Number of records for 2024-00-00 = 37

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Blue Corporal (Ladona deplanata) by John Petranka
Compare with: Eastern Pondhawk   Blue Dasher   Chalk-fronted Corporal  
Identification Tips: Move the cursor over the image, or tap the image if using a mobile device, to reveal ID Tips.
Note: these identification tips apply specifically to mature males; features may differ in immature males and females.

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Click on county for list of all its records for Blue Corporal
Flight Charts
Distribution Statewide, but of somewhat spotty occurrence in the mountains, where found mainly at the lower elevations.
Abundance Common to locally abundant in the southern Coastal Plain, and common to very common in the rest of the Coastal Plain and in the eastern and central Piedmont. Fairly common in the western Piedmont, but formerly rare to mostly now uncommon in the mountains, where it seems to be increasing (eight "new" county records were added in the past few years).
Flight Essentially the spring season only. In the Coastal Plain and Piedmont, the flight occurs from late February (rarely earlier) to mid-May, but sparingly to mid-June. There are several odd records for late summer and fall; two (August and November) are specimens (correctly labeled?) and one (September) is a sight report (correctly identified?). However, Richard Stickney photographed an adult on 3 November (2020), posted to this website, and saw another at the same site on the amazing date of 22 December (2020)! The mountain flight occurs from late March to early June, very rarely to early July.
Habitat Ponds, lakes, and other slow-moving waters. Most numerous at somewhat infertile waters such as Carolina bay pools and lakes.

See also Habitat Account for General Pond Shorelines
Behavior Only the Common Whitetail, among numerous species in NC, behaves like a Blue Corporal. Both sexes forage primarily by perching on the ground, and by making flights in open woods, powerline clearings, and other semi-open areas (typically somewhat close to woods).
Comments This skimmer can be the most often seen dragonfly, along with the Common Baskettail, on a spring-season outing. Dozens can be seen in a day, mostly immatures and females, which can be easily identified by the white or cream "corporal" stripe on each shoulder. These shoulder stripes become blue and less conspicuous in the adult male. Because Blue Corporals usually perch on the ground on dirt roads, wide trails, and in powerline clearings, an observer quickly learns this species, often flushing them while looking for less common odonates or for butterflies.
State Rank S5
State Status
Global Rank G5
Federal Status
Other Name
Species account update: LeGrand on 2023-01-16 14:49:50

Photo Gallery for Blue Corporal   71 photos are available.
Only the most recent 30 are shown.
Other NC Galleries:    Jeff Pippen    Will Cook    Ted Wilcox
Photo 1 by: P Dixon

Comment: Madison, 2024-02-25, Hot Springs
Photo 2 by: John Petranka

Comment: Orange, 2023-04-02, Hollow Rock Nature Park, Pickett Road Edges, Orange County, NHCBP - Female
Photo 3 by: Dick Thomas

Comment: Dare; Mainland, 2022-04-23, Buffalo City Milltail Creek put in Alligator NWR - male perched near creek
Photo 4 by: Matt Spangler

Comment: Orange, 2022-04-02, Occoneechee Speedway
Photo 5 by: Bonnie Simmons, Nancy Cowal, Tom Pericak

Comment: McDowell; M, 2021-04-19, - south of Old Fort
Photo 6 by: Ken Kneidel

Comment: Richmond; C, 2021-4-13, Sandhills Game Land, Lake Bagget
Photo 7 by: Ken Kneidel

Comment: Richmond; C, 2021-04-13, Sandhills Game Land, Lake Bagget
Photo 8 by: Jan Hansen

Comment: Orange, 2021-04-08, Brumley Forest North-Silo Pond
Photo 9 by: Richard Stickney

Comment: Moore; C, 2020-12-22, Sandhills Comm. College gardens
Photo 10 by: Richard Stickney

Comment: Moore; C, 2020-11-03, Sandhills Community College gardens & lake
Photo 11 by: John Petranka

Comment: Orange, 2020-04-16, Brumley Forest Preserve, south side of Hwy. NC 10. - Both sexes.
Photo 12 by: Chuck Smith

Comment: Rowan, 2020-04-06, Eagle Point Nature Preserve. - Female.
Photo 13 by: Jan Hansen

Comment: Orange, 2020-04-02, Brumley Forest North-Silo Pond
Photo 14 by: P Dixon

Comment: Madison, 2020-04-02, Sunny, low 60s
Photo 15 by: Doug Allen

Comment: Polk; P, 2020-03-27, Foothills Equestrian Nature Center (FENCE), - female, first submitted for Polk County, abundant in nearby SC
Photo 16 by: Mark Shields, Hunter Phillips

Comment: Cumberland, 2020-03-19, Carvers Creek State Park (CACR) - Sandhills Access
Photo 17 by: Mark Swanson

Comment: Avery, 2019-06-01, - Male photographed near Land Harbors Lake.
Photo 18 by: Chuck Smith, John Petranka and party.

Comment: Burke; P, 2019-05-15, South Mountains State Park (SOMO). Along and below the dam of Clear Creek Lake. - Both sexes.
Photo 19 by: John Petranka

Comment: Jackson, 2019-05-14, Panthertown Valley, Panthertown Creek in pool below Granny Burrell Falls. - Male
Photo 20 by: John Petranka

Comment: Orange, 2019-05-03, Eno River at Eno River State Park (ENRI) Pleasant Green Access.
Photo 21 by: Mark Shields, Hunter Phillips

Comment: Wayne, 2019-04-15, Cliffs of the Neuse State Park (CLNE)
Photo 22 by: Ken Kneidel

Comment: Mecklenburg, 2018-05-05, - sunning near beaver dam
Photo 23 by: Mark Shields

Comment: Lenoir, 2018-05-01, Neuseway Nature Park, Kinston
Photo 24 by: Mark Shields

Comment: Dare; Mainland, 2018-04-28, Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge - on Sandy Ridge Wildlife Trail
Photo 25 by: Mark Shields

Comment: Tyrrell, 2018-04-28, Scuppernong River Interpretive Boardwalk, Columbia
Photo 26 by: Mark Shields

Comment: Anson, 2018-04-21, Pee Dee National Wildlife Refuge
Photo 27 by: Barbara McRae

Comment: Macon, 2018-04-19, Male Blue Corporal attracted to discarded white rag near edge of pond.
Photo 28 by: Mark Shields

Comment: Northampton, 2018-04-14, Northampton Nature Trail, Jackson
Photo 29 by: Mark Shields and Hunter Phillips

Comment: Moore; C, 2018-04-05, Weymouth Woods Sandhills Nature Preserve (WEWO)
Photo 30 by: Barbara McRae

Comment: Macon, 2018-04-02, teneral