Common Whitetail

A skeeter hawk 4 U
Thu, Apr 2, 2009 at 7:37 PM
Hey Dan,
What do you call this creature when it is not flying ? — A ‘dragon’ ?
Ferd Hall

Common Whitetail
Common Whitetail

Hi Ferd,
Since Dragonfly is not two words, it would not be likely that anyone would call a stationary specimen a dragon, but we do like the colloquialism Skeeter Hawk since Dragonflies prey on Mosquitoes. Some people call Crane Flies by the name Mosquito Hawk, but that is not at all accurate. Though Dragonfly identification is something we prefer to leave to those more proficient with the order Odonata, we are relatively certain your distinctively marked specimen is a male Common Whitetail, Plathemis lydia. It sure is a stunning photograph and it matches an image posted on BugGuide. Since you are a longtime reader of our site, you did not use our new form, and your query did not contain a sighting location, a new feature that we really like since our site migration last September.

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BugMan aka Daniel Marlos has been identifying bugs since 1999. is his passion project and it has helped millions of readers identify the bug that has been bugging them for over two decades. You can reach out to him through our Contact Page.

1 thought on “Common Whitetail”

  1. I work outside in the Niagara region, particularily the Niagara Bench and I see these beautiful creatures all the time!


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