How to Identify a Dragonfly

How to Identify a Dragonfly

Explore the wondrous world of dragonflies and damselflies with these informative field guides.

By Justine E. Hausheer
Published: 06/22/2012

Covering southeastern species found north of Florida, naturalist Giff Beaton's guide is perfect for dragonfly enthusiasts living in Georgia and neighboring states. The text covers the 150 most common species in the region, many of which are found in the Mid-Atlantic States and Florida as well. Large color photographs make for easy identification, and the guide also includes information on flight seasons, range, similar species, habitat, and behavior.


By John C. Abbott

Princeton University Press, 360 pages, $39.50

Dragonfly lovers of the south-central United States now have a guide all their own. This comprehensive tome includes the 263 species of dragonflies and damselflies that inhabit Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, Oklahoma, and New Mexico. Covering more than half of North America's species, it's also useful outside of the south-central states. Entomologist John Abbott's weighty guide is for serious enthusiasts, and includes a checklist, large bibliography, and helpful range maps.


By Kathy Biggs

Azalea Creek Publishing, 128 pages, $9.95

Naturalist Kathy Bigg's beginner-friendly book covers the 113 species of dragonflies and damselflies of California. The guide features a bold line showing the length of each species, to help compare dragonflies of different sizes. Color photographs of both males and females are included. The descriptions are detailed but succinct, so it's light enough to carry into the outdoors. Beginners will also appreciate the explanations of technical terms included in the glossary.

Magazine Category

Author Profile


Dragonflies of the World

I am looking for a field guide that covers the dragonflies of world (outside of North America). I see Britain, Taiwan, Sri Lanka all inseparate books and am wondering if there is a single reference? thanks!

Dragonfly references

I am looking for an app, not a book.

Add comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
By submitting this form, you accept the Mollom privacy policy.