Wisconsin Odonata Survey


Cordulegaster obliqua  (Say, 1839)
Arrowhead Spiketail

Cordulegastridae, Spiketail Family


Global: G4     Wisconsin: S3    

Distinguishing Characteristics:

Compared to the twin-spotted spiketail, the arrowhead spiketail's yellow markings are larger and paler. The dorsal arrowhead markings on the slender abdomen are easy to notice. The male's abdomen is slightly clubbed while the female ovipositor (appendages at end of the abdomen) extends the length of a segment beyond the abdomen. The length of the body varies from 2.8 to 3.2 inches. The eyes are green. The female is similar in appearance to the male.

Description of Habitat/Range:

This species is commonly found throughout eastern United States and some parts of Canada. It is usually found at forest rivulets that are spring-fed and have a muck bottom, sometimes with rocks or in small rapid streams. It is infrequently found at scattered locations throughout Wisconsin.

Flight Season:

Mid-June to late July in Wisconsin.

Shading illustrates monthly percentages of the total flight season records for the species. Each flight season record is a unique date/location/observer combination where one or more adult or an exuvia was recorded (excludes nymphs). The actual number of flight season records for each month is shown in parentheses.

Flight seasons begin earlier in the southern part of the state, often by a week or more. Also, flight charts may not be accurate for rare species because of few data available.
View user-submitted photos

(Click on photos to enlarge)
Photo of Male arrowhead spiketail
Male arrowhead spiketail. © Dan Jackson

Photo of Male arrowhead spiketail
Male arrowhead spiketail. © Dan Jackson

Photo of Female arrowhead spiketail
Female arrowhead spiketail. © Dennis Paulson

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