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 MACROMIIDAE: Number of records added in 2021 = 19

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Swift River Cruiser (Macromia illinoiensis) by Doug Johnston and John Petranka
Compare with: Allegheny River Cruiser   Mountain River Cruiser   Royal River Cruiser  
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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 Swift River Cruiser
flight charts
distribution Essentially statewide, but as with nearly all such species, it is absent (or essentially so) from the extreme northeastern counties. No records east of Gates, Chowan, or Beaufort counties (except for Hyde County).
abundance Fairly common and widespread in most of the Piedmont and upper Coastal Plain, including the Sandhills. Uncommon to locally fairly common in the mountains and foothills, as well as the lower Coastal Plain. Certainly the most numerous river cruiser in the mountains, Piedmont, and upper Coastal Plain (though it can be outnumbered in the Coastal Plain by the Royal River Cruiser).
flight A fairly wide flight period, from late May to mid-October downstate, and at least from late May to early September in the mountains. One very late record for 14 November.
habitat Rivers and creeks, preferably in smaller rivers as compared with large ones.
behavior Very similar to other river cruisers, it can usually be seen when adults are cruising back and forth on long patrols along dirt roads or wide trails through forests, often well away from water. Males patrol along the length of a creek or small river.
comments There are two subspecies found in NC and other Southeastern states. The subspecies M. i. georgina ("Georgia River Cruiser") is found across most of the Piedmont and Coastal Plain, whereas the nominate subspecies (often called "Illinois River Cruiser") is more northern and is found in the mountains. Most sightings of river cruisers in NC refer to "Georgia", as this form is not uncommonly seen in mid- and late summer along wide trails and dirt roads through forests in the Piedmont. It has more obvious dorsal yellow spots on most abdominal segments than does the nominate subspecies and the Allegheny River Cruiser (which have a large dorsal spot on abdominal segment 7 but fewer spots otherwise on the abdomen).
state_status
S_rank S5
fed_status
G_rank G5
date_spread [Overwinter:] [Date Spread:] [No Late Date:] [Split on Feb:] [Default:]
synonym
other_name Illinois River Cruiser, Georgia River Cruiser
Species account update: LeGrand on 2021-02-05 15:45:34

Photo Gallery for Swift River Cruiser   53 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, 2021-07-24, Ivy River, under I-26 Bridge
Photo 2 by: Max Ramey, Aaron Reb

Comment: Wilkes; P, 2021-07-17, Kerr Scott Dam/ Yadkin River (Dam to 1000 ft downstream)
Photo 3 by: P Dixon

Comment: Madison, 2021-07-05, Near the French Broad, downstream from Murray Branch, - One illinoisensis, one georgina
Photo 4 by: Max Ramey

Comment: Watauga, 2021-06-15, Valle Crucis Community Park- Right downstream from property line. - Apparent first county record
Photo 5 by: p dixon

Comment: Madison, 2020-09-16, Hot Springs area - 2 males, one female, female netted and pictured
Photo 6 by: p dixon

Comment: Madison, 2020-09-16, Hot Springs area - 2 males sighted, one female ovipositing, female netted and pictured, 72 mm total length.
Photo 7 by: p dixon

Comment: Madison, 2020-09-11, Hot Springs area - 3 netted, a mated pair observed, a female observed ovipositing
Photo 8 by: p dixon

Comment: Madison, 2020-09-11, Hot Springs area - 3 netted, a mated pair observed, a female observed ovipositing, the pictured individual was 71 mm total length, mesotibial ratio .35
Photo 9 by: p dixon

Comment: Madison, 2020-08-31, Hot Springs area - road kill, male
Photo 10 by: p dixon

Comment: Madison, 2020-08-07, Hot Springs area
Photo 11 by: p dixon

Comment: Madison, 2020-08-07, Hot Springs area
Photo 12 by: p dixon

Comment: Madison, 2020-07-31, Hot Springs area - road killed male
Photo 13 by: John Petranka

Comment: Alamance, 2020-07-29, Cedarock Park patrolling Dean Coleman Road. - Male.
Photo 14 by: p dixon

Comment: Madison, 2020-07-28, Hot Springs area - patrolling on Polecat Rd
Photo 15 by: p dixon

Comment: Madison, 2020-07-18, Beside the French Broad River, road killed, Hot Springs area
Photo 16 by: B. Bockhahn, K. Kittelberger, P. Backstrom, N. Williamson

Comment: Moore; C, 2020-06-08
Photo 17 by: P Dixon

Comment: Madison, 2019-09-08, River Road, Sunny, 80s - Macromia illinoiensis illinoiensis
Photo 18 by: Mark Shields

Comment: Brunswick, 2019-06-21, Waccamaw River, from Pireway Boating Access Area to about 5 km upstream and back, by kayak.
Photo 19 by: P Dixon

Comment: Madison, 2019-06-14, Davis Branch watershed - Macromia illinoiensis georgina
Photo 20 by: Mark Shields

Comment: Sampson, 2019-05-24, Black River, from Ivanhoe Boating Access Area to 4.5 km upstream and back, by kayak. Georgina subspecies.
Photo 21 by: Mark Shields

Comment: Hoke, 2018-09-03, Lumber River, from Wagram Boating Access Area to Lumber River State Park - Chalk Banks boat ramp and back, by kayak
Photo 22 by: Mark Shields

Comment: Scotland, 2018-09-03, Lumber River, from Wagram Boating Access Area to Lumber River State Park - Chalk Banks boat ramp and back, by kayak
Photo 23 by: Mike Turner

Comment: Davie, 2018-08-04, S. Yadkin River @ Cooleemee boating access - ssp. georgina; netted, photographed, and released
Photo 24 by: Mike Turner

Comment: Wilkes; P, 2018-07-21, W. Kerr Scott Dam and Reservoir; from dam to ~1000' downstream - ssp. georgina; netted, photographed, and released
Photo 25 by: Mike Turner

Comment: Yadkin, 2018-07-20, Pilot Mountain State Park - Yadkin River section - ssp. georgina; netted, photographed, and released
Photo 26 by: Mark Shields

Comment: Robeson, 2018-07-15, Lumber River, from Fair Bluff Boating Access Area to South Carolina line, by kayak. Georgina subspecies.
Photo 27 by: Mike Turner

Comment: Alleghany, 2018-07-15, New River @ SR 1345 (Farmers Fish Camp Rd.) - ssp. illinoiensis
Photo 28 by: Mike Turner

Comment: Ashe, 2018-06-09, South Fork New River at SR 1308 and SR 1549 - ssp. illinoiensis; 2 collected, 1 netted, photographed and released
Photo 29 by: Mike Turner

Comment: Ashe, 2018-06-09, South Fork New River at SR 1308 and SR 1549 - ssp. illinoiensis; 2 collected, 1 netted, photographed and released
Photo 30 by: Mark Shields

Comment: Onslow, 2018-06-04, my property, Holly Ridge - female georgina with atypical broken ring on S2