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 = 9
Added in 2024-00-00 from a previous year = 1

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Little Blue Dragonlet (Erythrodiplax minuscula) by John Petranka
Compare with: Blue Dasher   Elfin Skimmer  
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 Little Blue Dragonlet
Flight Charts
Distribution Statewide, and probably occurring in all 100 counties. However, distribution is somewhat spotty in the western half of the Piedmont, probably owing to its inconspicuous behavior and tiny size, making it hard to encounter where not numerous.
Abundance Easily overlooked because of its tiny size and inconspicuous behavior, and thus is much more numerous in reality than observations may suggest. Numerous (common) in the southern half of the Coastal Plain (Sandhills east to Croatan National Forest in Craven/Carteret counties); only fairly common in the northern Coastal Plain. Uncommon in the eastern half of the Piedmont, but rare to uncommon in the western Piedmont and mountains.
Flight A very long flight season. In the Coastal Plain from mid-March to late December, though not numerous until mid-May and after the end of November. The Piedmont flight is somewhat shortened -- from early May (rarely in April) to mid-November, but rare after late September. In the mountains, it is mainly from mid-May to late September.
Habitat Ponds, lakes, marshes, and slower portions of rivers, typically places in full or partial sun.
Behavior Next to the Elfin Skimmer, which is even smaller, this species is the most inconspicuous dragonfly that frequents open fields, powerline clearings, savannas, and other sunny places. Adults perch low in vegetation, often down in grasses and forbs, and make short flights, often barely above one's ankles.
Comments Males can be confused with the larger Eastern Pondhawk or slightly larger Blue Dasher, or with the slightly smaller Elfin Skimmer, and females can also be confusing to beginners. People who spend much time looking at wildflowers in savannas and powerline clearings become familiar with this species, as its favored foraging areas tend to be such diverse, moist herbaceous areas.
State Rank S5
State Status
Global Rank G5
Federal Status
Other Name
Species account update: LeGrand on 2023-01-16 14:39:14

Photo Gallery for Little Blue Dragonlet   35 photos are available.
Only the most recent 30 are shown.
Other NC Galleries:    Jeff Pippen    Will Cook    Ted Wilcox
Photo 1 by: Max Ramey

Comment: Watauga, 2021-10-16, Brookshire Park Wetlands
Photo 2 by: Erich P. Hofmann

Comment: Columbus, 2021-09-24, Lake Waccamaw State Park along the Lakeshore Trail, ca. lat. 34.257, long. -78.488. iNat record #96007749 - Male. Caught in spider web
Photo 3 by: P Dixon

Comment: Madison, 2021-09-14, Wolf Laurel Exit
Photo 4 by: Tom Howe

Comment: Swain, 2021-09-03, Fairview Cemetery, 0.3 mi west of campsite #81 in GSMNP - perching on debris on open ground
Photo 5 by: Harry LeGrand, Lori Arent

Comment: Richmond; C, 2021-07-15, Sandhills Game Land
Photo 6 by: Kyle Kittelberger, Brian Bockhahn

Comment: Hoke, 2020-05-14, Nicholson Creek Game Land
Photo 7 by: John Petranka, Mark Shields

Comment: Durham, 2019-04-18, Eno River State Park (ENRI) Cole Mill Section. Along powerline corridor SW of Old Cole Mill Rd. - Male.
Photo 8 by: Mike Turner

Comment: Scotland, 2018-11-10, Sandhill Game Land; Cameron Lake - adult male
Photo 9 by: Mark Shields

Comment: Jackson, 2018-06-25, Pond beside Breedlove Road, 5 km northeast of Cashiers
Photo 10 by: Mike Turner

Comment: Alleghany, 2018-06-17, Little Glade Mill Pond at mile marker 230 on the Blue Ridge Parkway - adult male
Photo 11 by: Mark Shields

Comment: Onslow, 2017-07-23, my property, Holly Ridge
Photo 12 by: Conrad Wernett

Comment: Bladen, 2017-05-20, - Jones Lake. Many seen early in the day and several more later with Mike Turner
Photo 13 by: Mark Shields, Hunter Phillips

Comment: Scotland, 2017-05-15, Small streamhead pond about 150 m west of 17 Frog Pond, Sandhills Game Land
Photo 14 by: Conrad Wernett

Comment: Carteret, 2017-04-30, - Males and Females in high numbers around Patsy Pond and eastern Croatan National Forest.
Photo 15 by: Owen McConnell

Comment: Graham, 2016-06-09, McDowell
Photo 16 by: Mark Shields

Comment: Pender, 2015-09-01, Holly Shelter Game Land
Photo 17 by: Mark Shields

Comment: Carteret, 2015-07-01, Patsy Pond Nature Trail, Croatan National Forest
Photo 18 by: Kristy Baker

Comment: Currituck, 2015-06-09, Pine Island Audubon Sanctuary
Photo 19 by: John Petranka

Comment: Alleghany, 2014-07-04, Little Glade Millpond, along Blue Ridge Parkway about 0.5 mi. south of US 21 at Mile Marker 230 - Male
Photo 20 by: John Petranka

Comment: Bladen, 2014-06-01, Horseshoe Lake, Bladen County Game Land. Around the dam. - 2 males, 2 females. Photograph of female.
Photo 21 by: Mark Shields

Comment: Onslow, 2014-05-24, Small pond in Holly Ridge
Photo 22 by: Mike Turner

Comment: Wake, 2014-05-06, Lake Raleigh
Photo 23 by: Kyle Kittelberger, Brian Bockhahn, Edith Tatum

Comment: Orange, 2013-07-16, odeing at Occoneechee Mountain - awesome comparison with Blue Dasher
Photo 24 by: Kyle Kittelberger, Brian Bockhahn, Edith Tatum

Comment: Orange, 2013-07-16, odeing at Occoneechee Mountain
Photo 25 by: Kyle Kittelberger, Brian Bockhahn, Edith Tatum

Comment: Orange, 2013-07-16, odeing at Occoneechee Mountain - awesome comparison with Blue Dasher
Photo 26 by: Kyle Kittelberger, Brian Bockhahn, Edith Tatum

Comment: Orange, 2013-07-16, odeing at Occoneechee Mountain
Photo 27 by: Mike Turner

Comment: Orange, 2013-06-29, Occoneechee Mountain State Natural Area - males; lower pond
Photo 28 by: Mike Turner

Comment: Wake, 2013-05-30, Mitchell Mill State Natural Area - female
Photo 29 by: Doug Johnston

Comment: Brunswick, 2013-04-26, Green Swamp
Photo 30 by: Doug Johnston

Comment: New Hanover, 2013-04-25, Carolina Beach State Park