, Volume 6, Issue 3, pp 171-178

Interpreting dragonfly diversity to aid in conservation assessment: lessons from the Odonata assemblage at Middle Creek, north-eastern Victoria, Australia

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Abstract

In order to evaluate single-occasion sampling in compiling inventories for Odonata, larvae were sampled on 20 occasions from 1987–1990 at a site on Middle Creek, north-eastern Victoria, and adults sought also on each visit to more fully evaluate the diversity of the asemblage, and limitations of depending on a single life stage for this purpose. A total of 18 species (7 Zygoptera, 11 Anisoptera) included 15 species collected as larvae and 16 as adults. Few species were common as larvae, and about half the 2806 specimens identified were Austrogomphus cornutus Watson. Orthetrum caledonicum (Brauer) and Ischnura heterosticta (Burmeister) were also abundant, and these three species were also the most common as adults. The number of species obtained ranged from 2–9 on different occasions, and represent different 'habitat groups' within the local fauna. The Middle Creek odonate fauna appears to be much richer than that of a nearby site on the Kiewa River (12 species), and reasons for this are discussed. Seasonal variation in species representation and relative abundances are noted. Any single sample occasion provided insufficient knowledge of the total assemblage to interpret odonate diversity reliably.