The Dragonflies and Damselflies of North Carolina
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North Carolina's 188 Odonate species

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Related Species in GOMPHIDAE: Number of records added in 2021 = 4

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Splendid Clubtail (Gomphurus lineatifrons) by Richard Stickney
Compare with: Midland Clubtail   Cobra Clubtail   Cocoa Clubtail   Blackwater Clubtail   Septima's Clubtail  
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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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Click on county for list of all its records for Splendid Clubtail
flight charts
distribution Primarily the northern mountains, but there are a few other mountain records (and occurs in the mountains of northern GA). Also a handful of records for the northeastern Piedmont (Orange and Durham counties), plus one in the northwestern Piedmont (Surry County). Thus, it might occur in much of the northern Piedmont.
abundance Not rare in the northern mountains (uncommon to fairly common?), as Ted Wilcox has a number of photographs from Ashe and Alleghany counties on his website. Presumed to be very rare in the remainder of the mountains, and in the northern Piedmont. Certainly very rare if not absent in the intervening northern Piedmont.
flight Late spring and early summer. In the mountains from mid-May to late June; in the Piedmont, probably a week or two earlier, beginning in early May, and flying into June.
habitat Breeds at clear rivers and creeks, with gravel bottoms.

See also Habitat Account for Piedmont and General Rocky Rivers
behavior Males perch on rocks in the rivers or creeks, or on the ground or low vegetation nearby.
comments This is a large and colorful clubtail; males have a large club. Beginners might mistake it for the common Black-shouldered Spinyleg, though that species has a much smaller club. In the northeastern Piedmont, nearly all records are from the Eno River, and a record in 2018 came from the Yadkin River (for a new river basin record). Though the N.C. Natural Heritage Program tracks the species, as there are records for only 8 counties, the fact that Wilcox has a number of records for the northwestern counties suggests that a Watch List status might be more appropriate.
state_status SR
S_rank S2
fed_status
G_rank G4
date_spread [Overwinter:] [Date Spread:] [No Late Date:] [Split on Feb:] [Default:]
synonym Gomphus lineatifrons
other_name
Species account update: LeGrand on 2021-02-03 19:44:07

Photo Gallery for Splendid Clubtail   26 photos are shown. Other NC Galleries:    Jeff Pippen    Will Cook    Ted Wilcox
Photo 1 by: Mark Shields

Comment: Ashe, 2021-06-23, New River State Park - Wagoner Access - male
Photo 2 by: John Petranka

Comment: Ashe, 2021-06-08, New River State Park Elk Shoals Section.
Photo 3 by: John Petranka

Comment: Orange, 2021-06-06, Eno River State Park, Pleasant Green Access. - Exuvia
Photo 4 by: B. Bockhahn, K. Kittelberger

Comment: Alleghany, 2020-06-03, New River State Park
Photo 5 by: B. Bockhahn, K. Kittelberger

Comment: Alleghany, 2020-06-03, New River State Park
Photo 6 by: B. Bockhahn, K. Kittelberger

Comment: Alleghany, 2020-06-03, New River State Park; photo by K. Kittelberger
Photo 7 by: B. Bockhahn, K. Kittelberger

Comment: Alleghany, 2020-06-03, New River State Park; photo by K. Kittelberger
Photo 8 by: B. Bockhahn, K. Kittelberger

Comment: Alleghany, 2020-06-03, New River State Park; photo by K. Kittelberger
Photo 9 by: B. Bockhahn, K. Kittelberger

Comment: Alleghany, 2020-06-03, New River State Park; photo by K. Kittelberger
Photo 10 by: B. Bockhahn, K. Kittelberger

Comment: Alleghany, 2020-06-03, New River State Park; photo by K. Kittelberger
Photo 11 by: B. Bockhahn, K. Kittelberger

Comment: Alleghany, 2020-06-03, New River State Park; photo by K. Kittelberger
Photo 12 by: B. Bockhahn, K. Kittelberger

Comment: Alleghany, 2020-06-03, New River State Park; photo by K. Kittelberger
Photo 13 by: B. Bockhahn, J. Thomson

Comment: Durham, 2020-05-15, Perched on rocks in river
Photo 14 by: Mike Turner

Comment: Surry, 2018-06-10, Crater Park, Yadkin River, Elkin
Photo 15 by: Mike Turner

Comment: Surry, 2018-06-10, Crater Park, Yadkin River, Elkin
Photo 16 by: Curtis Smalling

Comment: Watauga, 2016-05-30, Meat Camp Creek
Photo 17 by: Curtis Smalling

Comment: Watauga, 2016-05-30, Meat Camp Creek
Photo 18 by: Richard Stickney

Comment: Durham, 2016-05-10, Eno River State Park
Photo 19 by: John Petranka

Comment: Orange, 2015-05-27, Eno River State Park (ENRI). Pleasant Green Access. Perched on trail in power line clearing just upstream from parking area. - Female. Very tame.
Photo 20 by: Randy Emmitt

Comment: Durham, 2002-05-23, Eno River State Park - Cole Mill
Photo 21 by: R Emmitt

Comment: Orange, 2002-05-07, Eno River State Park
Photo 22 by: Randy Emmitt

Comment: Orange, 2001-05-25, this female I found at Duke Forest in a powerline clearing.
Photo 23 by: Steve Hall

Comment: Orange, 1991-05-29, Eno River State Park, in riffles upstream from Few. First report for Orange County.
Photo 24 by: Ted Wilcox

Comment: Ashe, 2006-05-30, male
Photo 25 by: Ted Wilcox

Comment: Ashe, 2005-06-09, male
Photo 26 by: Ted Wilcox

Comment: Alleghany, 2006-06-22 - female