The largest dragonfly family in our region – 24 species in eight genera live here and one other species in another genus is a rare visitor. They come in many sizes and colours, many with bold wing markings or coloured veins. Their eyes meet broadly on top of the head. The anal loop in the hindwing is distinctive: foot-shaped with a long toe. Most common around ponds, marshy lakeshores and sluggish streams, the adults dart about and most species spend a lot of time perched horizontally in the sun. Females lay eggs alone or in the company of guarding males. Most dip the tip of their abdomen into the water when releasing the eggs, but some will tap or splash the eggs into wet mud or moss, or simply flick them into a dry pond basin. Some larvae, like those of the emeralds, move sluggishly or squat on the bottom mud; others climb in vegetation.
I had a good look at this distinctive species as it hunted over my lawn in Victoria during two days in July 1988. These are the only records in B.C., but this glider probably wanders here more often in July and August. Global warming may result in more sightings here. If it begins to breed in the province, this glider will frequent ponds, including temporary ones. The larvae will probably not overwinter here; adults will have migrated north in the spring and their offspring, emerging later in the summer, will fly south.