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

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Related Species in MACROMIIDAE: Number of records added in 2021 = 3

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Allegheny River Cruiser (Macromia alleghaniensis) by Doug Johnston
Compare with: Swift River Cruiser   Mountain River Cruiser   Royal River Cruiser  
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 in females.

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Click on county for list of all its records for Allegheny River Cruiser
flight charts
distribution Scattered across the mountains, Piedmont, and western Coastal Plain, with a disjunct (?) record from Pender County. Though probably occurring in all counties east to Hertford, Edgecombe, Cumberland, and Scotland, the range is spotty, probably owing mainly to the difficulty of identification (without a specimen).
abundance Uncommon in the mountains, Piedmont, and extreme western Coastal Plain -- at least in the past. Very rare to absent over nearly all of the eastern two-thirds of the Coastal Plain. Poorly known by most recent observers because of the difficulty in separation from both the Swift River Cruiser and the Mountain River Cruiser without a specimen.
flight The flight in the Piedmont and mountains occurs between early June and mid-September. This is likely also the flight period in the Coastal Plain, but known records there fall in a narrower range from late June to mid-August.
habitat Creeks and rivers.
behavior Similar to other river cruisers, in that males cruise back and forth quickly along the length of the stream. Adults often forage in long patrols along wooded roads and wide trails, typically higher later in the day. They can be difficult to see perched.
comments Though an observer without a net can frequently identify a "river cruiser" by its bright green eyes, yellow spots or bands on the black abdomen, and rapid back and forth cruising along a creek or a dirt road, identification of most species is tricky, even when seen perched. Often, they must be identified in the hand, or collected to study the genitalia. This species has a nearly complete yellow ring on abdominal segment 2 (a slight break dorsally). Refer to reference books and photos for identification. The scarcity of observational data in NC is understandable, as such data likely would be inconclusive or questionable (without photo or specimen). Thankfully, several people in the mountains have provided excellent recent documentation through photographs. However, there are disturbingly very few photos to document recent records from the Piedmont. Our website editors carefully scrutinized photo reports of all of the river cruisers (in late 2016), and several photos had been misidentified. Thus, the number of counties and records for most species of river cruisers changed due to moving records from one species to another. Though the N.C. Natural Heritage Program has retained a State Rank of S4, a revised (less numerous) rank of S3S4 might be better.
state_status
S_rank S4 [S3S4]
fed_status
G_rank G4
date_spread [Overwinter:] [Date Spread:] [No Late Date:] [Split on Feb:] [Default:]
synonym
other_name
Species account update: LeGrand on 2021-02-05 15:26:10

Photo Gallery for Allegheny River Cruiser   14 photos are shown. Other NC Galleries:    Jeff Pippen    Will Cook    Ted Wilcox
Photo 1 by: p dixon

Comment: Madison, 2020-09-11, Hot Springs area
Photo 2 by: p dixon

Comment: Madison, 2020-08-28, Hot Springs area - male, road kill
Photo 3 by: p dixon

Comment: Madison, 2020-08-28, Hot Springs area - male, road kill
Photo 4 by: p dixon

Comment: Madison, 2020-08-28, Hot Springs area - male, road kill
Photo 5 by: p dixon

Comment: Madison, 2020-08-28, Hot Springs area - male, road kill
Photo 6 by: p dixon

Comment: Madison, 2020-08-28, Hot Springs area - male, road kill
Photo 7 by: p dixon

Comment: Madison, 2020-08-04, Hot Springs area
Photo 8 by: p dixon

Comment: Madison, 2020-08-01, Downtown Marshall, NC - female, collected dead
Photo 9 by: P Dixon

Comment: Madison, 2019-07-01, Broadwing Farm and River Road, Hot Springs, high 80s, late afternoon - caught on my screen porch, Broadwing Farm
Photo 10 by: P Dixon

Comment: Madison, 2019-07-01, Broadwing Farm and River Road, Hot Springs, high 80s, late afternoon - caught on my screen porch, Broadwing Farm
Photo 11 by: P Dixon

Comment: Madison, 2019-06-01, Near meadows 1/2 mile downstream from Murray Branch
Photo 12 by: B. Bockhahn

Comment: Forsyth, 2013-07-30, - Caught in net during dragonfly program
Photo 13 by: Doug Johnston, Vin Stanton

Comment: Madison, 2012-07-22, Sandy Mush Game Land
Photo 14 by: Doug Johnston, Gail Lankford

Comment: Buncombe, 2010-08-13, Sandy Mush Game Land - Cedar Hill access