Eastern Pondhawk (Erythemis simplicicollis)
Detailing the identifying qualities of the Eastern Pondhawk, including physical features and territorial reach.
Updated: 7/31/2017; Authored By Staff Writer; Content ©www.InsectIdentification.org
The Common Pondhawk is a ruthless predator of other insects and an adept protector of its territory.
Pondhawks attack their insect prey with similar agility seen in their avian namesake. They are very good predators and can take down insects as large as themselves. They will even eat other members of their own species.
The males and females of this species differ in color. Adult males are a powdery blue with a yellow tip to the abdomen, while females are bright green with some dark brown/black spots on the abdomen. Young males are also green with rings on the abdomen, but they will change color as they mature.
Males aggressively defend their territories, especially at or near the water's edge. They will patrol their space, occasionally taking rest on the ground, floating trash on the water or on branches. Females drop their fertilized eggs into the water. They choose warmer, still waters as there are fewer potential predators there that might eat hatching young. There, the larvae (naiads) will develop eating other aquatic insects until they mature enough to crawl on land and molt into their adult form.