Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Arthropoda Insecta Odonata Aeshnidae

Scientific Name: Anax junius
Species Authority: (Drury, 1773)
Regional Assessments:
Common Name(s):
English Common Green Darner
Anax spiniferus Rambur, 1842
Libellula junia Drury, 1773
Taxonomic Source(s): Paulson, D.R. and Dunkle, S.W. 2009. A checklist of North American Odonata including English name, etymology, type locality, and distribution. Originally published as Occasional Paper No. 56, Slater Museum of Natural History, University of Puget Sound, June 1999; completely revised 2012. Available at:

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2009
Date Assessed: 2007-03-01
Assessor(s): Paulson, D. R.
Reviewer(s): Clausnitzer, V. & Kalkman, V. (Odonata Red List Authority)
A. junius is common all across North America and there no indication of any population decline, nor are any threats currently identified.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species occurs in nine provinces in Canada, fifty one states in the United States of America, eighteen states in Mexico, Kamchatka in the Russian Federation and many Caribbean Islands within the Greater and Lesser Antilles.
Countries occurrence:
Bahamas; Belize; Bermuda; 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 (Baja California, Baja California Sur, Chihuahua, Coahuila, Durango, Hidalgo, Jalisco, Michoacán, Morelos, Nayarit, Oaxaca, Quintana Roo, Sinaloa, Sonora, Tabasco, Tamaulipas, Veracruz, Yucatán); Puerto Rico; Russian Federation (Kamchatka); 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
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:A. junius is an abundant and widespread species.
Current Population Trend:Stable
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:A. junius is found at lakes and all but the smallest ponds, also slow streams. Because of 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, they appear 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 Atlantic coast but also in the Great Lakes. Occasionally found far out at sea off southern California in fall, 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. Fewer individuals in same regions are more like other dragonflies, emerging in spring from larvae that overwintered locally.
Systems:Terrestrial; Freshwater

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): There are no threats presently affecting this species.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Present in many federal, state, local, and private reserves in Canada, Mexico, and the United States of America. The migratory nature of A. junius mandates cross-border cooperation, although so far no reason for concern.

Classifications [top]

1. Forest -> 1.4. Forest - Temperate
suitability: Marginal  
3. Shrubland -> 3.4. Shrubland - Temperate
suitability: Marginal  
4. Grassland -> 4.4. Grassland - Temperate
suitability: Marginal  
5. Wetlands (inland) -> 5.3. Wetlands (inland) - Shrub Dominated Wetlands
suitability: Suitable  
5. Wetlands (inland) -> 5.5. Wetlands (inland) - Permanent Freshwater Lakes (over 8ha)
suitability: Suitable  
5. Wetlands (inland) -> 5.6. Wetlands (inland) - Seasonal/Intermittent Freshwater Lakes (over 8ha)
suitability: Suitable  
5. Wetlands (inland) -> 5.7. Wetlands (inland) - Permanent Freshwater Marshes/Pools (under 8ha)
suitability: Suitable  
5. Wetlands (inland) -> 5.8. Wetlands (inland) - Seasonal/Intermittent Freshwater Marshes/Pools (under 8ha)
suitability: Suitable  
15. Artificial/Aquatic & Marine -> 15.2. Artificial/Aquatic - Ponds (below 8ha)
suitability: Marginal  
15. Artificial/Aquatic & Marine -> 15.3. Artificial/Aquatic - Aquaculture Ponds
suitability: Marginal  
15. Artificial/Aquatic & Marine -> 15.8. Artificial/Aquatic - Seasonally Flooded Agricultural Land
suitability: Marginal  
15. Artificial/Aquatic & Marine -> 15.9. Artificial/Aquatic - Canals and Drainage Channels, Ditches
suitability: Suitable  

In-Place Research, Monitoring and Planning
In-Place Land/Water Protection and Management
  Occur in at least one PA:Yes
In-Place Species Management
In-Place Education

Bibliography [top]

Abbott, J. C. 2005. Dragonflies and damselflies of Texas and the south-central United States. Princeton University Press, Princeton.

Boomsma, T. and Dunkle, S.W. 1996. Odonata of Belize. Odonatologica 25: 17-29.

Dunkle, S.W. 2000. Dragonflies Through Binoculars. Oxford University Press, Oxford.

Flint, O.S., Jr., Bastardo, R.H. and Perez-Gelabert, D.E. 2006. Distribution of the Odonata of the Dominican Republic. Bulletin of American Odonatology 9: 67-84.

IUCN. 2009. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species (ver. 2009.2). Available at: (Accessed: 3 November 2009).

Klots, E.B. 1932. Insects of Porto Rico and the Virgin Islands. Odonata or dragon flies. Scientific Survey of Porto Rico and the Virgin Islands 14: 1-104.

Manolis, T. 2003. Dragonflies and damselflies of California. University of California Press.

Meurgey, F. 2006. Odonata of the French West Indies: diversity and updated checklist of species. Argia 18(2): 16-18.

Needham, J.G., Westfall, M.J., Jr. and May, M.L. 2014. Dragonflies of North America, Third Edition. Scientific Publishers, Gainesville, Florida.

Nikula, B., Loose, J.L. and Burne, M.R. 2003. A Field Guide to the Dragonflies and Damselflies of Massachusetts. Massachusetts Division of Fisheries & Wildlife.

Paulson, D. 2009. Dragonflies and Damselflies of the West. Princeton University Press, Princeton.

Paulson, D.R. 1999. Dragonflies (Odonata: Anisoptera) of south Florida. Slater Museum of Natural History; Occasional Papers 57: 1-139.

Walker, E.M. 1958. The Odonata of Canada and Alaska. Vol. II, Part III: The Anisoptera—Four Families. University of Toronto Press.

Whitehouse, F.C. 1943. A guide to the study of dragonflies of Jamaica. Bulletin of the Institute of Jamaica. Science series. 3: 1-69.

Wikelski, M., Moskowitz, D., Adelman, J.S., Cochran, J., Wilcove, D.S. and May, M.L. 2006. Simple rules guide dragonfly migration. Biology Letters 2(3): 325-9.

Citation: Paulson, D. R. 2009. Anax junius. In: The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2009: e.T165081A5962282. . Downloaded on 09 October 2015.
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