Nebraska Dragonflies and Damselflies

Black Saddlebags

Tramea lacerata

Hagen, 1861

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This species is mostly black and brown, but the top of the head is a deep metallic purple. The wings are clear except for a large black splotch at the base of each hindwing, making the body appear wider than it is. There are light spots on the tops of abdominal segments 3 to 7 which darken in mature males. This species migrates.

This is a common transcontinental species to be expected in every county.It can be found patrolling edges of ponds and lakes or, almost as frequently, hawking insects over fields. It is a frequent inhabitant of shelter belts far from water; it is never found in large numbers at any site.

Black Saddlebags
Black Saddlebags

Size: 51-55 mm (2.0-2.2 in)

Habitat: ponds, slow streams, ditches

Great Plains Range: TX, OK, KS, NE, SD, NM, CO, MO, IA, MN

Flight season: late May to early October

Black Saddlebags map

Green indicates accepted county record (specimen or photograph).
Yellow indicates sight record only.

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