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

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Related Species in AESHNIDAE: Number of records added in 2021 = 1

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Black-tipped Darner (Aeshna tuberculifera) by Jim Petranka
Compare with: Shadow Darner   Springtime Darner   Green-striped Darner  
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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 Black-tipped Darner
flight charts
distribution Northern mountains/foothills only; records only from Watauga, Avery, Wilkes, and Burke counties.
abundance Undoubtedly rare, and possibly local. Poorly known in the state, though there are a few recent records (2016-18); the last previous record was from 1969.
flight Late for a dragonfly, especially in the mountains. The NC dates available occur between 5 August and 29 September, though all but one record is from the last 20 days of September. Likely flies from early August into October, but most odonate field work in the mountains terminates in September and thus few people are likely to be active in the northern mountains when this species is flying.
habitat Mostly at ponds with marshy edges, such as cattails. The ponds are typically at high elevations (mainly over 3500 feet).

See also Habitat Account for Montane Herbaceous Ponds
behavior Poorly known in NC. All recent records were of individuals seen over or along the edges of ponds, and thus it is not known how far individuals range away from such waters in the state.
comments NC lies at the southern edge of the range, as it is not known from Georgia. Jim Petranka photographed an individual -- the first photograph of the species known in NC -- on 27 September 2016. This excellent record has moved the species off of the "historical" list of the N.C. Natural Heritage Program; thus, the State Rank has changed from SH [historical] to S1 [very rare]. Both John and Jim Petranka added additional county records (for Watauga and Burke), documented with photos, in 2017. Obviously, other ponds in the northern mountains need to be checked in the fall season, especially in the latter half of September.
state_status SR
S_rank S1
fed_status
G_rank G5
date_spread [Overwinter:] [Date Spread:] [No Late Date:] [Split on Feb:] [Default:]
synonym
other_name
Species account update: LeGrand on 2021-02-02 10:05:22

Photo Gallery for Black-tipped Darner   9 photos are shown. Other NC Galleries:    Jeff Pippen    Will Cook    Ted Wilcox
Photo 1 by: Mark Shields

Comment: Ashe, 2021-08-08, Pond Mountain Game Land - male at small, cattail-fringed pond; 4,550 feet elevation
Photo 2 by: Mark Shields

Comment: Ashe, 2021-08-08, Pond Mountain Game Land - male at small, cattail-fringed pond; 4,550 feet elevation
Photo 3 by: Mark Shields

Comment: Ashe, 2021-08-08, Pond Mountain Game Land - Female seen along trail near a pond at 4,450 feet elevation, about 0.5 miles from pond where male observed.
Photo 4 by: Mark Shields

Comment: Ashe, 2021-08-08, Pond Mountain Game Land - Female seen along trail near a pond at 4,450 feet elevation, about 0.5 miles from pond where male observed.
Photo 5 by: John Petranka, Sally Gewalt

Comment: Watauga, 2017-09-22, Elk Knob State Park, small marshy pond. Elevation ca. 4,400ft. - Males; one photographed.
Photo 6 by: John Petranka, Sally Gewalt

Comment: Watauga, 2017-09-22, Elk Knob State Park, small marshy pond. Elevation ca. 4,400ft. - Males; one photographed.
Photo 7 by: Jim Petranka, Becky Elkin, and Bill Booth

Comment: Burke; M, 2017-09-19, In a small partially shaded pond that was lined with American Bur-reed and other emergent vegetation; just south of Jonas Ridge. - Record is based on an abdomen (still moving) that was found in a net after capturing a Shadow Darner. The Shadow Darner presumably had just captured and partially consumed the Black-tipped Darner.
Photo 8 by: Jim Petranka

Comment: Avery, 2016-09-27, An adult female photographed on 27 September, 2016 at a permanent pond with emergent vegetation and shrubs along the edges. The site is located on private property that adjoins the Blue Ridge Parkway in southern Avery County.
Photo 9 by: Jim Petranka

Comment: Avery, 2016-09-27, photo at pond near Blue Ridge Parkway