Anax junius 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Arthropoda Insecta Odonata Aeshnidae

Scientific Name: Anax junius (Drury, 1773)
Regional Assessments:
Common Name(s):
English Common Green Darner
Anax spiniferus Rambur, 1842
Libellula junia Drury, 1773
Taxonomic Source(s): Schorr, M. and Paulson, D. 2013. World Odonata List. Tacoma, Washington, USA Available at: (Accessed: 20 November 2013).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2018
Date Assessed: 2014-11-28
Assessor(s): Paulson, D.R.
Reviewer(s): Cannings, R. & Tognelli, M.
Contributor(s): Marinov, M.
Anax junius is common across North America (in Canada, only in the south), and there is no indication of any population decline, nor are any threats currently identified. It is therefore listed as Least Concern.
Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This very widespread North American species occurs from Alaska, Manitoba and Prince Edward Island south throughout the United States and Mexico to Honduras. It is known from nine provinces in Canada, 49 states in mainland United States of America, and 21 states and the Distrito Federal in Mexico. In addition, it is known from the Greater Antilles (Cuba, Cayman Islands, Jamaica, Hispaniola, Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands), the Lesser Antilles south to Barbados, and the Hawaiian Islands. Records of vagrants are from Kamchatka in Russia, Tahiti, Bermuda, England and France. It may be only a non-breeding migrant in some peripheral regions. Whether native or introduced to Hawaii is not known. Walker and Corbet (1958) reported it as occurring in Tahiti, French Polynesia, but this record has never been validated and the species has not been observed there since (Marinov per. comm. 2015).
Countries occurrence:
Bahamas; Barbados; Belize; Canada (Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Ontario, Prince Edward I., Québec, Saskatchewan); Cayman Islands; Cuba; Dominican Republic; Guadeloupe; Guatemala; Jamaica; Martinique; Mexico (Aguascalientes, Baja California, Baja California Sur, Chihuahua, Coahuila, Durango, Guanajuato, Hidalgo, Jalisco, México Distrito Federal, Michoacán, Morelos, Nayarit, Oaxaca, Quintana Roo, San Luis Potosí, Sinaloa, Sonora, Tabasco, Tamaulipas, Veracruz, Yucatán); Montserrat; Puerto Rico; United States (Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Hawaiian Is., Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming); Virgin Islands, British
Russian Federation (Central Asian Russia, Kamchatka)
Additional data:
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:Anax junius is an abundant and widespread species.
Current Population Trend:Stable
Additional data:
Continuing decline of mature individuals:No
Extreme fluctuations:NoPopulation severely fragmented:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:Anax junius is found at lakes and all but the smallest ponds, also slow streams. Larvae live in aquatic vegetation but can be in open in fishless ponds, which are usually seasonal in nature. Because of its migratory nature, it is liable to be seen anywhere at or away from water. It has a relatively rare breeding strategy: large proportion of populations in most areas are migratory. Mature adults move north in spring throughout North America, appearing before any can be found emerging. These individuals breed, their larvae develop during summer, and their offspring emerge in late summer, then they fly south in immature colours. At times migrants are seen in large numbers, especially on the Atlantic coast but also on the Gulf coast and in the Great Lakes. They are occasionally found far out at sea off southern California in autumn, commonly seen from oil platforms in Gulf of Mexico. These individuals presumably breed somewhere in Mexico and the Caribbean, probably also in far southern United States, their larvae developing during winter and their offspring moving north in spring. This scenario is speculative but with strong circumstantial evidence (Wikelski et al. 2006, May and Mathews 2008, May 2012). Fewer individuals in the same regions are more like other dragonflies, emerging in spring from larvae that overwintered locally. There are no genetic differences between these two populations (Freeland et al. 2003), and it is likely that the fate of a larva may be determined by when it comes into the last stadium during the summer.
Systems:Terrestrial; Freshwater
Movement patterns:Full Migrant

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: This species is not used or traded.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): There are no significant threats presently affecting this species. Its populations are so widespread and individuals are so vagile that local droughts, even at the level of widespread climate change, should have little effect. Its ability to use newly formed wetlands will always favour it.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: This very wide-ranging and common species is present in many federal, state, local, and/or private reserves in Canada and the United States and at least a few in Mexico. Its occurrence in protected reserves in other countries, including the West Indies, is poorly known. As it occurs in so many temporary habitats, its populations are secure even where not officially protected. The migratory nature of A. junius mandates cross-border cooperation, although so far there is no reason for concern.

Citation: Paulson, D.R. 2018. Anax junius. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2018: e.T165081A65831504. . Downloaded on 23 September 2018.
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