E-Fauna BC: Electronic Atlas of the Wildlife of British Columbia

Erythemis collocata
Western Pondhawk
Family: Libellulidae
Species account author: Robert Cannings.
Extracted from Introducing the Dragonflies of British Columbia and the Yukon (2002)

Photo of species

© Rosemary Taylor  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #11119)

E-Fauna BC Static Map
Distribution of Erythemis collocata in British Columbia
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Species Information


Medium-sized and grass-green with clear wings. The face and eyes are also green, though the eyes turn blue with age. Females and young males have a dark stripe on top of the abdomen. Males turn blue with pruinescence as they age, but females remain green. Length: ♂ 42 mm, ♀ 41 mm.

Flight Period

B.C., mid May to early October.

Genus Description

Most pondhawks range in southern areas and only two similar species live as far north as Canada, one eastern and one western. The genus name, Erythemis, means “the red one”, referring to several red species in the American tropics; northern species are green or blue.


Family Description

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.
Field Notes

Lives around ponds and marshy lakes, especially where floating plants occur. It usually perches flat on the ground.


Western. Lowlands of B.C.’s south coast and at the north end of Osoyoos Lake in the southern interior.

Status Information

Origin StatusProvincial StatusBC List
(Red Blue List)
NativeS3S4BlueNot Listed
BC Ministry of Environment: BC Species and Ecosystems Explorer--the authoritative source for conservation information in British Columbia.

Additional Photo Sources

General References

Recommended citation: Author, Date. Page title. In Klinkenberg, Brian. (Editor) 2021. E-Fauna BC: Electronic Atlas of the Fauna of British Columbia [efauna.bc.ca]. Lab for Advanced Spatial Analysis, Department of Geography, University of British Columbia, Vancouver. [Accessed: 2023-10-02 9:02:13 AM]
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© E-Fauna BC 2021: An initiative of the Spatial Data Lab, Department of Geography, UBC