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Visiting Promised Land State Park for Odonata

Lilypad Clubtail

Lilypad Clubtail

I recently had the opportunity to visit Promised Land State Park, located in Greentown (Pike County) Pennsylvania, to focus on macro photography of insects, particularly Odonata (Dragonflies and Damselflies).

The park encompasses a beautiful area with mixed hardwood forests, vegetated lakes, streams and other wetlands, and is surrounded by the Delaware State Forest. Follow this link for a detailed map of the park.

I found the following areas to be productive:

  • Conservation Island – There is a parking area for access to the trails of Conservation Island. Here I observed Petite and Racket-tailed Emeralds flying over the parking area and trail. Just past the parking area is a short bridge which connects the mainland with the island. Down the banks on either side of the bridge a number of skimmers and pond damsels species were observed. I also spent time wading in the waters of Promised Land Lake, just off shore from the parking area. This is an excellent section of vegetated lake where I observed and photographed pond damsels, skimmers, and clubtails. My images of Lilypad Clubtail were captured here.
  • Parking Areas and Trails – Off the road from park headquarters to the lower lake campground (Lower Lake Road), there are 3 parking areas for hiking the trails. I observed a number of species flying in this area, which is away from water, and along the trails. Observations here included Black-tipped Darner, Ski-tipped Emerald, and Sweetflag Spreadwing.
  • Little Falls Trail – The trail to Little Falls hugs the edge of the east branch of the Wallenpaupack Creek. Along the trail, or on the creek, observations included Dragonhunter, Eastern Least Clubtail, Orange Bluet, and Band-winged Meadowhawk.
  • Lower Lake – The vegetation between the parking area and the edge of Lower Lake was good for Swamp and Elegant Spreadwing.

I was fortunate to photograph a number of different dragonfly species. A few of the images are included below.

Lancet Clubtail (Gomphus exilis) Dragonfly – Male

Frosted Whiteface (Leucorrhinia frigida) Dragonfly – Male

Lilypad Clubtail (Arigomphus furcifer) Dragonfly – Male

Frosted Whiteface (Leucorrhinia frigida) Dragonfly – Female

Lilypad Forktail (Ischnura kellicotti) Damselfly – Teneral Male

Swamp Spreadwing (Lestes vigilax) Damselfly – Male

Skimming Bluet (Enallagma geminatum) Damselfly – Tandem Pair

Skimming Bluet (Enallagma geminatum) Damselfly – Mating Pair

Lilypad Forktail (Ischnura kellicotti) Damselfly – Juvenile Female

Species Observed

I observed the following species while visiting the park:

Calopterygidae – Broad-winged Damsels

Calopteryx maculata – Ebony Jewelwing

Lestidae – Spreadwings

Lestes forcipatus – Sweetflag Spreadwing
Lestes inaequalis – Elegant Spreadwing
Lestes rectangularis – Slender Spreadwing
Lestes vigilax – Swamp Spreadwing

Coenagrionidae – Pond Damsels

Argia fumipennis – Variable Dancer
Enallagma civile – Familiar Bluet
Enallagma geminatum – Skimming Bluet
Enallagma signatum – Orange Bluet
Enallagma traviatum – Slender Bluet
Ischnura kellicotti – Lilypad Forktail
Ischnura posita – Fragile Forktail
Ischnura verticalis – Eastern Forktail
Nehalennia irene – Sedge Sprite

Aeshnidae – Darners

Aeshna tuberculifera – Black-tipped Darner
Aeshna umbrosa – Shadow Darner
Anax junius – Common Green Darner

Gomphidae – Clubtails

Arigomphus furcifer – Lilypad Clubtail
Gomphus exilis – Lancet Clubtail
Gomphus lividus – Ashy Clubtail
Hagenius brevistylus – Dragonhunter
Stylogomphus albistylus – Eastern Least Clubtail

Corduliidae – Emeralds

Dorocordulia lepida – Petite Emerald
Dorocordulia libera – Racket-tailed Emerald
Epitheca princeps – Prince Baskettail
Somatochlora elongata – Ski-tipped Emerald

Libellulidae – Skimmers

Celithemis elisa – Calico Pennant
Celithemis eponina – Halloween Pennant
Celithemis fasciata – Banded Pennant
Erythemis simplicicollis – Eastern Pondhawk
Ladona deplanata – Blue Corporal
Ladona exusta – White Corporal
Ladona julia – Chalk-fronted Corporal
Leucorrhinia frigida – Frosted Whiteface
Leucorrhinia intacta – Dot-tailed Whiteface
Leucorrhinia proxima – Belted Whiteface
Libellula cyanea – Spangled Skimmer
Libellula incesta – Slaty Skimmer
Libellula luctuosa – Widow Skimmer
Libellula pulchella – Twelve-spotted Skimmer
Pachydiplax longipennis – Blue Dasher
Perithemis tenera – Eastern Amberwing
Plathemis lydia – Common Whitetail
Sympetrum internum – Cherry-faced Meadowhawk
Sympetrum semicinctum – Band-winged Meadowhawk
Sympetrum vicinum – Autumn Meadowhawk

On the Road

For RV’ers and campers visiting the park, there are a number of campgrounds to choose from (although 2 are currently closed for renovations.) Follow this link for more information on Promised Land State Park.

Click on the photos above for more information, click the link in the caption to see all photos for that species, or click here to see more images from Promised Land State Park.

See my page on Odonata (Dragonflies and Damselflies) Images to find links to all dragonfly and damselfly images by family, scientific name (genus and species), or common English name.

All images © Clarence Holmes

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