One of the most precious gems of the Sanctuary is the Hine’s Emerald Dragonfly (Somatochlora hineana). This winged wonder is listed as Federally endangered, and its largest populations are found in Door County, particularly in The Ridges and surrounding wetlands. Researchers from the Illinois Natural History Survey and the Illinois State Museum are involved in research on the ecology of the Hine’s Emerald. A recent study involved tagging live dragonflies to determine their flight range. Since this dragonfly is federally protected, such studies are approved and carefully monitored by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
Field studies of the number and behavior of Hine’s Emerald dragonflies, along with obtaining photographic records, have been conducted for several summers. Here, a researcher attaches a tiny numbered tag to the thorax of an Emerald, in order to identify it if captured at a later date. Other studies focus on the larval stage of this and other dragonflies.
Monitoring the status of this endangered dragonfly is ongoing at The Ridges. Learn more information about the Hines Emerald Dragonfly.